Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 6-4
Krejcikova once again earned herself two match points. A double fault wasted the first one but then Pavlyuchenkova sent the ball long to hand the trophy over to the Czech start, who just three years back said she wanted to be more than just a doubles player. She is only the second Czech player after Hana Mandlikova (1981) to win the women’s singles title at the French Open.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 5-4
A beautiful backhand from Krejcikova caught the sideline to give the Czech player two match points. The first one was saved by the Russian as Krejcikova sent a backhand long. The second was a service return that Krejcikova sent long again. Deuce. And then Pavlyuchenkova reeled off two quick points to put the pressure back on Krejcikova, who will have the serve out the match.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 5-3
Krejcikova with a big hold, inching closer to the title. She will make Pavlyuchenkova serve to stay in the match. Almost there.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 4-3
BREAK! Krejcikova finds her range. Firing winners on both flanks, she moves into a 4-3 lead. The big question though is whether she can now hold her serve.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 3-3
Krejcikova responds with a very nice hold of her own. And after 20 minutes, we are 3-3 in the final set. Remember, there are no tiebreaks in the final set.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 2-3
A very nice hold for Pavlyuchenkova. Serve firing, backhand firing... just what the Russian needed.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 2-2
BREAK! We are seeing flashes of brilliance. Pavlyuchenkova with a big backhand to get the break back. We are back on serve.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 2-1
BREAK! Krejcikova moves ahead in the final set. Pavlyuchenkova with a double fault to hand the break over to the Czech player.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 1-1
Both players holding their serve. This is a rare occurrence in this match. Maybe the players will find some rhythm now.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6, 0-1
Pavlyuchenkova with a hold to begin the decider. This should help her stay focussed. Too many unforced errors from both players still.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-6
BREAK! After an hour and 13 minutes, the women’s singles final is a set-all. Pavlyuchenkova powered through the game and we still don’t know how hampered her play will be.
Pavlyuchenkova took a MTO. Her left leg is now strapped. How well will she recover from this?
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 2-5
BREAK! Pavlyuchenkova had a set point but Krejcikova fought back to get a break back. The Russian seems to be having some fitness issue as well. The left leg seems to be a problem and she told the physio that she is struggling to serve.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 1-5
BREAK! Pavlyuchenkova gets a break as Krejcikova, inexplicably, continues to struggle. How does the game go to pieces right after winning a set?
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 1-4
Pavlyuchenkova has got her groundstrokes and serve going. She holds again to get a 4-1 lead. The tennis isn’t great but starting to resemble a contest that little bit more.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 1-3
A hold for Krejcikova. She needed this. The Czech player has gone off track and she needs to find something that will bring her back in the zone.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 0-3
Pavlyuchenkova wakes up and Krejcikova goes off to sleep. A strange passage of play. It was all one way first and now it is all the other way.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 0-2
BREAK! Pavlyuchenkova jumped up to a 0-40 lead, three breakpoints. But the Czech saved two of them. Then, the Russian got the break. Here we go.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1, 0-1
Pavlyuchenkova with a big hold. She was down a breakpoint but found a win to the game. She needed this. The match needed this. Krejcikova continuing to play very well. If only the Russian can raise her level too, we will have quite the match on our hands.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 6-1
And that is the first set. It has taken Krejcikova just 30 minutes. Pavlyuchenkova will want to forget this first set. She will also want to forget the occasion. Flawless tennis by the Czech so far.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 5-1
BREAK! Pavlyuchenkova just hasn’t turned up today. Can someone tell her this is not the final? Too many unforced errors from the Russian and even her serve, normally a weapon, is not firing.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 4-1
A solid hold for Krejcikova. She sealed the game with an ace... almost feels like she left all her nerves in the semis. Much calmer today.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 3-1
BREAK! Pavlyuchenkova was in trouble at 15-40 but then came up with two great points including a wonderful backhand down the line to bring the score back to deuce. Krejcikova earned herself another breakpoint due to an unforced error from AP’s backhand and then another unforced error gave her the break.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 2-1
And we have our first hold of the match. Krejcikova moving better. She is certainly not as nervous as she was in the semis.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 1-1
BREAK! Pavlyuchenkova can’t consolidate the break. Krejcikova used a lot of variations in her last match but today she is playing straighter and more direct. She got the break after AP let a lob just go over her head. It caught the back line. And we are back on serve.
Krejcikova vs Pavlyuchenkova, 0-1
BREAK! A nervy start for Krejcikova again – same as the semi-final and Pavlyuchenkova seized the opportunity to get the first break of the match. The Russian was up 0-40 and then Krejcikova got one back before committing a double fault to hand over the break.
What they said
– “The 14-year-old me would tell me ‘What took you so long?’,” said Pavlyuchenkova who played her first Slam event in 2007. “It’s been a long road. I had my own long special road. Everybody has different ways. I’m happy I’m in the final.”
– “Every time before a match or after a match I just feel like she’s there, she’s looking after me,” said Krejcikova about her mentor Novotna after her semi-final win.
Almost time: Another hot day in Paris so the ball should fly around a bit. Pavlyuchenkova will enjoy the conditions. Krejcikova will rely on her variations to do the trick.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Barbora Krejcikova, two of the most unlikely Grand Slam finalists of the modern era, meet in the French Open title match at the conclusion of a shock-heavy tournament.
World number 32 Pavlyuchenkova has reached this stage for the first time at the 52nd attempt, 10 years after making a first Slam quarter-final in Paris.
If she wins, Pavlyuchenkova, who will be 30 in three weeks’ time, will be the third oldest first time Slam champion.
Krejcikova, ranked one place lower, has long been labelled a doubles specialist and this is just her fifth appearance in a main draw singles at the Slams, having never previously got beyond the last 16.
Paths to the final
1st rd: bt Kristyna Pliskova (CZE) 5-7, 6-4, 6-2
2nd rd: bt Ekaterina Alexandrova (RUS x32) 6-2, 6-3
3rd rd: bt Elina Svitolina (UKR x5) 6-3, 6-2
4th rd: bt Sloane Stephens (USA) 6-2, 6-0
QF: bt Coco Gauff (USA x24) 7-6 (8/6), 6-3
SF: bt Maria Sakkari (GRE x17) 7-5, 4-6, 9-7
1st rd: bt Christina McHale (USA) 6-4, 6-0
2nd rd: bt Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) 6-2, 6-3
3rd rd: bt Aryna Sabalenka (BLR x3) 6-4, 2-6, 6-0
4th rd: bt Victoria Azarenka (BLR x15) 5-7, 6-3, 6-2
QF: bt Elena Rybakina (KAZ x21) 6-7 (2/7), 6-2, 9-7
SF: bt Tamara Zidansek (SLO) 7-5, 6-3