The Road to a Grand Slam Final is more than about 2 weeks of tennis, now Pavlyuchenkova or Krejcikova will etch their name into history

A road to a Grand Slam Final is more than about two weeks of tennis, without the wins you don’t get but the hard work, sacrifices, lessons and sometimes disappointment are pivotal in getting two this moment.

Two weeks ago I didn’t expect to say the words “Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova vs Barbora Krejcikova in the French Open Final” but I don’t know how you could be disappointed by this.

Both players have earned their right to be in the final, a lot has been said and women’s tennis has been slated but why can’t people celebrate success? If the sport was just about the top 10 winning it be boring, stories like these make tennis what it is.

Barbora Krejcikova

Barbora has done must of her winning on the doubles tour, the 25 year old is a former world number one in doubles, 2018 champion at the French Open and Wimbledon and has won 18 titles as well as 3 consecutive Australian Open mixed doubles titles.

Before this run in Paris she had only played four main draw singles at Grand Slams winning five matches and these last two weeks has won six to make her maiden final.

A big part of her career was being coached and mentored by a Wimbledon legend, the late Jana Novotna. Jana’s story to her Wimbledon triumph is one of my favourites in the tournament history, never giving up and believing in yourself.

It was a lovely moment to see Barbora speak about Jana after her semi-final on the court and in Press.

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova

Anastasia was a fantastic junior, world number one, Australian Open and US Open champion but we know that success on the juniors does not mean success on the main tour.

For me the Russian I would have as one of the best players never to have been in the top ten and it isn’t a criticism. She has always been someone who is consistent, battles hard but has not hit that next level.

Ten years ago she made her first Grand Slam quarter final in Paris, before this week she had made it to six singles quarter finals and six doubles without winning one but at the seventh time of asking not only won a quarter final but is in a Grand Slam final ten years after her first appearance in the final eight.

The Russian who turns 30 next month has played in 51 of the last 52 Grand Slam events dating back to May 2008 and only missed last years US Open during the pandemic.

She hasn’t won a title since 2018 in France but in Strasbourg against Cibulkova and has won a match against a top ten player every year since 2009 winning 36 matches.

Who do I think will win?

I don’t know, both have had incredible runs and have beaten some top players to get here. It will be a wonderful story no matter who wins.

I could make cases for both, if I have to call it I would just for Krejcikova.

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