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Osaka beats Kvitova in marathon WTA Finals opener

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Naomi Osaka reaches for a back hand during her match against Petra Kvitova

Osaka also beat Kvitova within the Australian Originate final in January

Naomi Osaka beat Petra Kvitova 7-6 (7-1) 4-6 6-4 in a gruelling opening match of the WTA Finals in Shenzhen, which lasted two hours 39 minutes.

Japan’s world quantity three Osaka obtained the first-pickle tie-atomize after Kvitova skipped over three atomize aspects at 4-4.

However the Czech, 29, fought support from a atomize down to determine the second pickle and force a decider.

Kvitova made Osaka look forward to her take, breaking the 22-three hundred and sixty five days-extinct when she served for the match at 5-2.

“For me it used to be very robust and in most cases there is first-spherical first jitters and it’s likely you’ll presumably well’t truly give you the cash for it as she got right here laborious at me from the origin,” Osaka talked about.

The WTA Finals occasion sees the arena’s top eight avid gamers compete in two spherical-robin groups of four, with the winners and runners-up advancing to the semi-finals.

Kvitova, ranked sixth within the arena, and Osaka are within the Red Group in Shenzhen with top-ranked Australian Ashleigh Barty and Belinda Benic of Switzerland, who play each and each diverse within the second game on Sunday.

Defending champion Elina Svitolina is within the Red Group alongside world quantity two Karolina Pliskova, Simona Halep and Bianca Andreescu.

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