Petra Kvitiova won the Toray Pan Pacific Open today, defeating Angelique Kerber in the final of the the event's 30 anniversary. The victory was a portrait of both the truly great player Kvitova became in 2011, as well as the inscure, error-prone player she became following her banner year. She defeated Kerber 6-2, 0-6, 6-3, and the scoreline paints the portrait.
Kvitova swept through the first set, hitting winners into both corners and comporting herself easily at the net. She so dominated Kerber that it would have been easy to think that she was actually going to get off the court with a straight sets win. But hey--this was Kvitova, and this was a big match. There was still time for her to lose her way. And lose her way she did (following a between-sets chat with her coach--just saying). Second set Petra was an error machine whose clumsiness boosted Kerber's confidence, which is really all that the German needed to bring up her own level.
So befuddled was Kvitova that Kerber was able to take the second set 6-0 while hitting only a few winners.
But we knew how it would end. Kvitova raced to a 4-0 lead in the final set, Kerber then made things harder for her, but--on her fourth match point--Kvitova won her second title of the year, and the 11th of her career.
It had been four years since two leftys contested a WTA fnal, and 20 years since two of them contested a big (what we now call "premier") final: In 1993, Martina Navratilova defeated Monica Seles for the Paris indoor event final.
Cara Black and Sania Mirza won the Tokyo doubles title. They defeated Chan Hao-Ching and Liezel Huber 4-6, 6-0, 11-9. This win gives Mirza four doubles titles for the year.