Kvitova survives third-round test
Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova survived a test in the third round of the French Open, eventually getting past Nina Bratchikova 6-2 4-6 6-1.
The Czech has a tendency to be erratic and, after powering through the first set, she found herself trailing 5-1 in the second to her Russian opponent, who is ranked 109th in the world.
Kvitova always looked to have too much power and quality, though, and, although she could not save the set, she was relatively untroubled in coming through the decider.
The 22-year-old is much more of a force on faster surfaces and will be looking to reach the quarter-finals at Roland Garros for the first time.
In the fourth round Kvitova will play unseeded American Varvara Lepchenko, who ensured there will be no third final in a row here for Italy's Francesca Schiavone.
The 14th seed, who beat Sam Stosur in 2010 then lost to Li Na last year, took the first set reasonably comfortably but was pegged back by Lepchenko.
The third set was a topsy-turvy affair, with the American serving for the match at 5-3 only for Schiavone to level, but Lepchenko broke again and then saved four break points on her own serve before finally taking it 3-6 6-3 8-6.
The victory means Lepchenko is certain to qualify for the US team at the Olympics, leaving Venus Williams vulnerable because Sloane Stephens, who is ranked lower at the moment, is still in the tournament.
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