Kvitova: Eastbourne tennis is perfect Wimbledon warm-up

Petra Kvitova at the AEGON International tennis 2013 Devonshire Park Eastbourne June 19th 2013 ENGSUS00220130619175138

Petra Kvitova at the AEGON International tennis 2013 Devonshire Park Eastbourne June 19th 2013 ENGSUS00220130619175138

  • Wimbledon champ all set for Devonshire Park
  • Kvitova reached semi-final at Eastbourne in 2011
  • Last she pulled out of the tournament with injury
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Reigning Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova says the Aegon International Eastbourne holds a special place in her heart.

The world number four will use the tournament to prepare her Wimbledon defence.

“It is a special tournament for me and one I always enjoy playing,” said the Czech, who won her second Wimbledon title last summer.

“From the first round, every match is tough which makes it the perfect warm-up event in the week before Wimbledon.”

The 25-year-old reached the quarter-final last year but was forced to pull out of the tournament due to injury.

She forfeited the match to Brit Heather Watson, who became the first home grown player in since 1982 to make the semi-finals in Eastbourne.

It is a special tournament for me and one I always enjoy playing

Petra Kvitova

Watson was knocked out by eventual winner Maddison Keys.

Kvitova is expected to be among the players at the latter stages of the tournament once more.

While she has struggled with injuries she insists she will be ready.

The year started poorly as she was beaten by Keys in the Australian Open before taking six weeks off because of exhaustion.

She lost her first match on returning to the WTA tour in March but got back to winning ways in the Fed Cup, winning both matches for the Czech Republic as her country reached the final.

At the French Open she was knocked out by Switzerland’s Timea Bzcsinszky in round four but she will always be a threat at the Eastbourne tournament, where she reached the semi-final in 2011.

Kvitova is a double Wim