13 Nov 2013

Spotlight - Barbora Krejcikova - October 2013


By Nick Fishpool

Barbora Krejcikova (CZE)

October 2013


After nearly two months away from ITF Pro Circuit play, Barbora Krejcikova returned at the start of October for four clay court $10,000 tournaments in Croatia.

During this month the 17-year-old player from the Czech Republic saw action in both singles and doubles events. Of particular interest was her doubles contests as the teenager had reached all four 2013 junior Grand Slam finals in the doubles events coming away with the title at Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the US Open having narrowly missed out on the Australian title on a match tiebreak.

In her opening tournament of the month, Krejcikova was competing in Solin as the top seed in singles and, with Tereza Malikova, in doubles.

Round one of the singles event saw her take the first set on a tiebreak 7-2 before easing through the next five sets to reach the semifinal. This run saw her claim three sets without loss of a game and conceding two games in the other two sets.

The young Czech Republic player was then awarded a walkover into the final where she was to face her doubles partner of the week Malikova, who was also the second seed.

In the doubles event, the pair, having received a first round bye and posting a 62 62 quarterfinal victory had seen their progress halted in the semifinal by the eventual champions, Dea Herdzelas and Barbara Kotelesova, in three sets.

Now, on opposing sides of the net, the pair were reunited on court with the singles title at stake.

During the final, Krejcikova continued to display the fine form displayed in the previous rounds and, dropping just four games, eased to her first singles title since a win in Dubrovnik almost one year previous with a 62 62 win.

Speaking of Dubrovnik, this is where tournament number two of October for Krejcikova was to take place following a one week break from the Circuit.

Krejcikova was again named the top seed for the singles event, but, with a change of partner to Lenka Jurikova, was seeded second for the doubles.

The singles event saw her post wins of 62 60 and 60 63 as her excellent singles form showed no signs of diminishing during her break. A closer 63 76(4) win over Croatian seventh seed Iva Mekovec followed before Russia’s Olga Doroshina brought her run to an end. A 64 16 64 triumph took the Russian into the final where she would go on to claim the title.

Krejcikova, a title winner in her last tournament, did, however, still claim a title herself this week with a hard fought win in the doubles final. Having required a match tiebreak to settle their semifinal, Krejcikova and Jurikova again found themselves into a match tiebreak to decide the final.

Opposing them in the title match was the fourth seeded pairing of Gabriela Pantuckova and Polona Rebersak and despite being pulled level, just as they had been in the semifinal, Krejcikova and Jurikova emerged victorious 75 36 [10-4].

Staying in Dubrovnik but moving to a different venue Krejcikova was to be seeded second for singles and, keeping with Jurikova, third for doubles.

The first two rounds of the singles event saw Krejcikova taking on players who had come through the qualifying event and each was quickly sent packing following wins of 60 63 and 60 60.

In the quarterfinal and semifinal she faced two seeded opponents whom she saw off conceding just five games against each in wins of 63 62 and 62 63 over fifth seed Vivien Juhaszova and eighth seed and quarterfinal opponent from the previous week Mekovec respectively.

A second singles title was soon hers, despite a second set blip. Slovenia’s Polona Rebersak had defeated the number one seed in straight sets in the semifinal but found Krejcikova too much and the Czech player ran out a 61 36 60 winner.

There was, however, to be no repeat of their title success of the previous week for Krejcikova and Jurikova as, two days prior to the singles final, the pair lost out 63 63 in the doubles final to Agnes Bukta and Vivien Juhaszova.

As October rolled into November, a tournament in Umag was next up for the Czech teenager.

For this tournament she was seeded third in both singles and doubles. In the doubles she was partnered with Agnes Bukta of Hungary, a player she had faced in the doubles final the previous week.

For the third tournament in succession, Krejcikova opened with a straight sets defeat of a qualifier. Also, her 63 60 win ensured that in all four tournaments she had won an opening round set without loss of a game!

Two 62 62 victories were then posted either side of a walkover win to progress Krejcikova into a third singles final of the month.

In the final she was up against the top seed and her doubles partner Agnes Bukta and the match would ensure that one of them would be ending the month with a title with the pair having lost together in the doubles final a couple of days earlier.

Krejcikova made the brighter start of the two and quickly raced into a one set lead, dropping just one game. The second set was more evenly contested and ten games were split 64 in Krejcikova’s favour to give her a third singles title of the month and year.

Her singles performances this month would also earn her enough ranking points to lift her to No. 359 in the latest rankings released by the WTA.