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Tough path for Kvitova repeat at Wimbledon

June 24, 2012 at 5:17 AM
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LONDON, June 22 (UPI) -- Petra Kvitova drew a difficult path to repeat as Wimbledon women's single champion, Friday's announcement of the tournament draw indicates.

The Czech player stopped Maria Sharapova 6-3, 6-4 last year in the finals at Wimbledon for her first Grand Slam title and is seeded No. 4 this year.

Kvitova reached the semifinals this year at the Australian and French opens.

She'll start her 2012 Wimbledon run against Akgul Amanmuradova. Her potential route to the finals includes matches against sixth-seeded Serena Williams in the quarterfinals and world No. 2 Victoria Azarenka, who won the Australian Open, in the semifinals.

Azarenka's highest seeded possible opponent in the quarterfinals is No. 7 Caroline Wozniacki.

World No. 1 Sharapova, coming off a French Open title that completed her career Grand Slam, could see eighth-seeded Angelique Kerber in the quarterfinals. She drew Anastasia Rodionova in the first round.

Sharapova is looking to become the first woman to win consecutive Grand Slam titles since Kim Clijsters won the 2010 U.S. Open and 2011 Australian Open.

The lower section of that half of the draw is highlighted by third-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska and No. 5 Samantha Stosur, who could square off in the quarterfinals.

There is a potential for an all-Williams sisters final. Venus Williams, unseeded, is in Sharapova's half of the draw and could meet Radwanska in the second round. If Venus and Serena Williams do advance to the finals -- they have nine of the last 12 Wimbledon titles between them -- it would be the fifth time they have met in the Wimbledon final.

Wimbledon opens play Monday. The women's singles title match is scheduled July 7.

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