Kvitova looks forward to 2018

18 December 2017 00:40:36 GMTPlus11

Petra Kvitova says the past year has been a rollercoaster but she is looking forward to the new season with optimism.

The two-times Wimbledon champion suffered an awful start to last year, having been stabbed in her hand in an attack in December 2016.

She required surgery and her future in the sport was placed in doubt. She missed the first few months of last season but recovered and returned to competitive action at the French Open last year.

It was a pretty tough year and I had a lot of emotions during my comeback.

Petra Kvitova

She lost in the second round in Paris and again at Wimbledon but reached the quarter-finals at the US Open. She also went on to win the Aegon Classic in Birmingham last year and, now ranked 29 in the world, is approaching the new season in a positive frame of mind.

She told the Guardian: "This year has been a rollercoaster. The beginning wasn't very nice, so I'm really glad that it's over. Now I can look at everything positively again.

"It was a pretty tough year and I had a lot of emotions during my comeback... I can see that I can play tennis – and I can play it well, and for me this is the best outcome I could have hoped for."

Kvitova, who last played at the Tianjin Open in October, is planning to begin the 2018 season with the Brisbane International in January, closely followed by the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam of the year.

She said that it will take longer for her to get full movement in her hand but hopes, with time, that it will become stronger than ever.

Kvitova, whose best appearance in Melbourne was a semi-final in 2012, is 18/1 to win there in 2018.

Defending champion, Serena Williams, who is intending to return for the tournament after maternal leave, is 1212/1 with Britain's Johanna Konta priced at 20/1 to win her first Grand Slam.

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