Former World No. 2 and two-time Wimbledon champion (2011 and 2014) Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic kicked off 2024 by sharing exciting personal news on social media. Kvitova, 33, and her husband Jiri Vanek are expecting their first child this summer. Vanek has been Kvitova's coach since 2016, and the pair began dating in 2021. They were married on July 22, 2023.
Kvitova had one of her best tennis years in recent history in 2023 winning the Miami Open by defeating the red-hot Elena Rybakina. In addition to making the pregnancy announcement, Kvitova said that she planned to skip the 2024 Australian Open. Though she will miss her annual trip to Australia, Kvitova admitted that she is "looking forward to spending some time at home preparing for this exciting next chapter in our lives."
Kvitova turned pro in 2006 and has been a fixture on the WTA tour for over half of her life playing in rivalries that span generations of tennis players such as Ashleigh Barty, Maria Sharapova, and Venus Williams to name a few. Like all athletes, she has dealt with injuries related to tennis, but unlike others, she dealt with a horrifying home break-in in 2017 where the assailant cut her left (serving) hand. It was miraculous that she was able to recover and return to tennis after such a traumatic injury.
Petra Kvitova's future plans
Kvitova did not detail her career plans beyond the Australian Open. She is married to her coach so training and returning to the WTA tour after maternity leave, should she choose to do so, would be easier to coordinate.
She could join a growing number of active WTA players who return to tennis after becoming mothers including Victoria Azarenka, Taylor Townsend, Elina Svitolina, Angelique Kerber, and Naomi Osaka. Kvitova extended the 2024 WTA baby boom; Belinda Bencic announced that she was pregnant in November.