Australian Open 2012: Comparing Petra Kvitova's Form to Wimbledon 2011

Shane LambertAnalyst IIJanuary 23, 2012

Petra Kvitova
Petra KvitovaMark Kolbe/Getty Images

Petra Kvitova is best known for winning Wimbledon in 2011 as the Czech star defeated Maria Sharapova in the final at the All England Club last summer. Currently ranked No. 2 in the WTA rankings, Kvitova may soon add another Grand Slam title to her tennis resume as she is deep into the draw at the 2012 Australian Open.

Kvitova has won four matches at Melbourne Park and she currently finds herself in the quarterfinals where she will meet Sara Errani, an inexperienced player for this deep in a major.

Whether Kvitova will win the title at Melbourne Park or whether she will falter in the late rounds remains to be seen. However the following statistical comparison between her run at Wimbledon in 2011 and her current run at the 2012 Australian Open suggests that the Czech star is playing just as well now as she was last summer.

Firstly, here is a recap of what Kvitova has accomplished through the first four rounds of the 2012 Australian Open.

First round: versus Vera Dushevina (ranked 82nd), Kvitova wins 6-2, 6-0

Second round: versus Carlo Suarez Navarro (ranked 58th), Kvitova wins 6-2, 2-6, 6-4

Third round: versus Maria Kirilenko (ranked 29th), Kvitova wins 6-0, 1-0 (Kirilenko retires)

Fourth round: versus Ana Ivanovic (ranked 22nd), Kvitova wins 6-2, 7-6

Compiled Australian Open 2012 stats through first four rounds

Opponent’s average ranking: 48th

Sets Won vs. Sets Lost: 8-1 (88.9 percent won)

Games Won vs. Games Lost: 46-22 (67.6 percent won)

Secondly, here is a look at what Kvitova accomplished through the same rounds of Wimbledon in 2011.

First round: versus Alexa Glatch (ranked 173rd), Kvitova wins 6-2, 6-2

Second round: versus Anne Keothavong (ranked 111th), Kvitova wins 6-2, 6-1

Third round: versus Roberta Vinci (ranked 29th), Kvitova wins 6-3, 6-3

Fourth round: versus Yanina Wickmayer (ranked 19th), Kvitova wins 6-0, 6-2

Compiled stats through first four rounds at Wimbledon 2011

Opponent’s average ranking: 83rd

Sets Won versus Sets Lost: 8-0 (100 percent won)

Games Won versus Games Lost: 48-15 (76.2 percent won)

When the two sets of stats are compared at first glance it appears as though Kvitova is off-form at the 2012 Australian Open, at least in comparison to Wimbledon in 2011.

Kvitova has dropped a set in Melbourne Park where she was perfect in that regard through four rounds at the All England Club. Additionally, Kvitova has won a lower percentage of games through four rounds at Melbourne Park when compared to Wimbledon in 2011 as well.

However I think it would be a mistake to assume that Kvitova is playing worse at this year’s Aussie than she was at Wimbledon in 2011.

The reason for that has to do with the luck of the draw. As the average rankings show, Kvitova had a much easier draw through the first four rounds of Wimbledon in 2011 as she has had so far at Melbourne Park here in 2012.

The one match at the 2012 Australian Open that might draw some negative criticism toward Kvitova is the second round match against Suarez Navarro. Kvitova could have lost that match but was able to persevere.

However Suarez Navarro is a talented player and the fact that she played Kvitova tight might only be taken to mean that the Spaniard is on her way back to the Top 25—or better.

Kvitova’s draw to the title at the Australian Open will go through Errani in the quarters, a player I think Kvitova will beat. Then the Czech star will likely play Maria Sharapova, and maybe Victoria Azarenka in the final.

The latter two matches look tough but Kvitova is playing well enough to take the Aussie down in what would be her second Grand Slam title.