ST. PETERSBURG, Russia - Petra Kvitova became the first wildcard to advance to the final of the St. Petersburg Ladies' Trophy on Saturday, taking out No.5 seed Julia Goerges in a thrilling three-set semifinal, 7-5, 4-6, 6-2.
Making her debut in St. Petersburg, Kvitova scored her second three-set victory of the week behind 30 winners and 11 aces, as she won 80% of the points behind her first serve to secure victory in two hours, five minutes.
Kvitova scored her third consecutive win against Goerges, and though the two had not played in nearly five years, Saturday's semifinal was also the third straight match between the two to go the distance.
"I just really had to try to play aggressive and dictate the points from the beginning," Kvitova said after the match. "It feels great. I never thought I’d be in the final coming into this tournament."
Kvitova won three games in a row at the end of the first set, storming back to take a one-set lead after Goerges herself served for the opener.
The second set was dominated by serve, as neither player was even stretched to deuce over 10 games. A pivotal fifth game of the set gave Goerges the only break of the set - as a 0-30 lead led to the lone break point either player faced in the set.
Goerges dropped just five points behind her serve in the set - despite only landing a shade over 50% of her first serves overall.
Kvitova proved at her dominant best on serve in the final set, as this time it was her turn to never face a break point over the course of the decider.
The two-time Wimbledon champion broke Goerges' serve in her first and last service games of the decider to move through to her first final since June of last season, when she won the Aegon Classic in Birmingham on grass.