Petra Kvitova column: Better Court One memories, strawberries & why long matches are good

Petra Kvitova column

Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, who has won 27 singles titles on the WTA Tour, is writing a column for the BBC Sport website during the championships at the All England Club.

The 29-year-old Czech, who before this week had not played since pulling out of the French Open in May with an arm injury, beat France's Kristina Mladenovic 7-5 6-2 in the second round on Thursday.

I now have some better memories of Court One at Wimbledon.

Last year, I lost to Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the first round on that court and I didn't want the same thing to happen again.

I started off a bit tired and nervous against Kristina Mladenovic, maybe because of last year, but I was happy that I was able to turn the first set around and that I kept playing well after that.

I was also reminded of some nice memories on my way to the court when I saw some photos on the wall from when I won my first Wimbledon in 2011, which I had not noticed before.

It's taken me a while to get into the third round here again. I haven't been here since 2015, which was before my 'second career' - as I call the time after the attack. I will do my best in the next match against Magda Linette, and I am just so glad to still be in the draw.

It will be a difficult match against Magda, who I beat three years ago in Montreal, and I just need to be ready and healthy. I will have another day off on Friday, where I will go to the gym but definitely not hold the racquet.

Strawberries and (a little bit of) cream

Strawberries & cream at Wimbledon

I always stay in Wimbledon village every year. I love going to the restaurants there and the shops.

I love sushi and eat a lot of it during tournaments, and I really like Italian too. If I have time, I will sometimes go for a manicure or pedicure in the village.

I rent a house rather than stay in a hotel, and I always stay in a different one. It's very nice and relaxing there; it's like staying at home. Sometimes my team have barbecues at the house in the back garden.

I have been to see Big Ben and had a walk near the London Eye.

One of the main traditions I like to do when I am here is to have strawberries and cream. And yes, I'm allowed the cream! Just a little bit, of course.

I've also been following some of the other tennis results, like Coco Gauff. She is playing very well and it's great to see someone so young going deep into the tournament.

'Matches are my way of training'

Petra Kvitova tweet: "Don't be afraid to fail. Be afraid to not try."

I'm a player who doesn't really need too many practice sessions at Grand Slams, especially when I've had a really big injury to my forearm that meant I didn't know if I could play here at all.

It is a good way to do it. I've done it many times in the Grand Slams, where I have days off with no hitting - I am used to it. And so I will have another day off on Friday.

For me, it's just enough to play in a match. Matches are training enough - the longer they go on, the better it is since I haven't trained as much.

When the match gets longer, I play better.

Petra Kvitova was speaking to BBC Sport's Sonia Oxley at Wimbledon.

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