‘It’s hard to believe’ – Caroline Garcia upsets Petra Kvitova, wins Western & Southern Open crown

MASON, Ohio — Caroline Garcia accelerated next week’s US Open and captured the Western & Southern Open women’s tennis championship with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Petra Kvitova on Sunday.

Garcia, already the first qualifier to reach the tournament final, took the win when Kvitova sent back into the net a second time. Garcia dropped to her knees and lay on her back on the track after the last point.

“It’s hard to believe I’m here today,” Garcia said in her speech to the audience after the game. “It’s been such a week.”

The 28-year-old Frenchwoman entered Sunday’s game with a WTA Tour-leading 25 wins since June.

“Every win is important. Every title is very special,” said Garcia. “It’s always very difficult to describe it. It doesn’t happen that often, and you have to really enjoy it. I’m really grateful for this great tennis week and to win another title is very special.”

28th-ranked Kvitova and 35th-ranked Garcia both shook off first-round losses last week in Toronto and made their first appearances in a Cincinnati final.

“Certainly not the result I wanted, but… I have to take it that way and see the positive things,” said Kvitova. “I know it hurts now, but on the other hand I have to see it as an overall and be proud of my 40th final of my career.”

Garcia broke her Czech opponent in the first game and raced to a 4-0 lead. Garcia also got an early lead with a first game break in the second set.

“It’s been such a crazy road the last few weeks, but I’ve really enjoyed it,” said Garcia. “[Let’s] keep it up.”

32-year-old Kvitova left the field to treat an injury after trailing 2-0 in the second set. She looked sharper after her return, but was unable to overcome the early break.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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