On Saturday, Barbora Krejcikova achieved the feat and lifted her first Grand Slam trophy at the French Open. The Czech defeated Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-1 2-6 6-4 in an emotional match.
This is a huge surprise for this prestigious tournament, as we are talking about an unseeded player making only her fifth appearance in a major singles draw.
The beginning of the match was adverse for the Czech, as in the first game she committed two double faults that led to her being broken. However, this would prove to be a deceptive mirage, as Krejcikova responded relentlessly and won the next six games to take the first set.
The second set was the complete opposite of the first as Pavlyuchenkova played more relaxed and grew in confidence.
The power of the Russian’s strokes was unstoppable and she took a comfortable 5-1 lead into the second set, which she would go on to win.
The deciding set was tense, both exchanged breaks of serve and Pavlyuchenkova saved two match points, but it was Krejcikova who touched the glory.
The 25-year-old paid tribute to her mentor Jana Novotna, the 1998 Wimbledon champion, who passed away in 2017 after a long battle with ovarian cancer.
“She is looking after me from up there,” said the former doubles world number.