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15 - 23 June 2019

Nature Valley Classic

Edgbaston Priory Club

Nature Valley Classic – 15 - 23 June 2019

Nature Valley Classic: Kvitova, Rybarikova, Buzarnescu and Strycova prevail

  • WTA logo
  • 22/06/2018

  • Major Events

Defending champion Petra Kvitova will be bidding for a place in the Nature Valley Classic final for the second consecutive year when she takes on in-form Romanian Mihaela Buzarnescu in Saturday’s semi-finals at the Edgbaston Priory Club.

Kvitova has looked in imperious form so far this week at the Edgbaston Priory Club and is yet to drop a set in the defence of the title she won under such emotional circumstances a year ago. She is bidding to become the first woman to win back-to-back titles in Birmingham since Maria Sharapova in 2004 and 2005. 

Kvitova looked in dazzling form in dismissing Julia Goerges 6-1, 6-4 with a sure-footed performance that belied the fact that it was only her third match on grass this year. She is wary of the challenge of playing Buzarnescu, a player who has improved her ranking this year with a series of eye-catching performances on different surfaces. She proved too strong for a below-par Elina Svitolina, beating the second seed 6-3, 6-2.

“I think she's pretty confident right now,” said Kvitova, seeded fourth, of Buzarnescu. "She’s in good form as we see. She's a lefty. Probably she likes the grass as well using a lefty serve. I mean, she's playing with the confidence with nothing to lose. Like for me she seems to be really relaxed every time she's on the court, off the court. That's probably her biggest weapon now.”
 
Old friends Magdalena Rybarikova and Barbora Strycova face each other in Saturday’s other semi-final after former Birmingham champion Rybarikova dismissed qualifier Dalilia Jakupovic 6-2, 6-4 and Strycova’s opponent Lesia Tsurenko was forced to retire with left hip pain. 

Strycova revealed that she and Rybarikova have been enjoying watching the football World Cup together this week. “We know each other so many years already. She's just so normal,” said Strycova. “We go out. We talk about other stuff than tennis. We really get along very well. We have a lot of fun together. We watch every night football here. Going to be today as well. I don't like football much, but when it's World Cup, I am expert!”

Check out Saturday's full order of play here

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Limited tickets for the Nature Valley Classic are still available. Find out how to secure your tickets here and read more about other British Tennis events, including the Fever-Tree Championships.

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