Two-Time Wimbledon Champion Kvitova Attacked at Her Home

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
The Associated Press
December 20, 2016 Updated: December 20, 2016

PRAGUE—Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova was injured by a knife-wielding attacker at her home on Tuesday and had to undergo surgery.

The 2011 and 2014 champion at the All England Club said the injury to her left hand was “severe.”

“In my attempt to defend myself, I was badly injured on my left hand. I am shaken, but fortunate to be alive,” Kvitova, who is left-handed, wrote on Twitter. “The injury is severe and I will need to see specialists, but if you know anything about me I am strong and I will fight this.”

It was not immediately clear how the injury could affect Kvitova’s play, but she underwent surgery “because of her condition and future career,” said Karel Tejkal, Kvitova’s spokesman.

Earlier, Tejkal said the incident, which he described as a burglary, occurred Tuesday morning in the eastern Czech town of Prostejov.

“What happened to me was certainly not pleasant, but it’s behind me,” Kvitova said in an earlier statement on the Facebook page of the Czech Republic’s Fed Cup team. “I have the best possible care and I’m in touch with my loved ones. The worst is behind me.”

Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris on May 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)
Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris on May 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Prostejov police spokesman Frantisek Korinek said the attacker, a man who is about 35 years old, escaped from the scene and was at large. He said police have launched a manhunt.

Kvitova was scheduled to participate in a charity event in the city of Brno on Tuesday with another Czech player, Lucie Safarova.

“It’s horrible,” Safarova told Czech public radio. “Things like that are shocking to all of us. It can happen to anyone of us. That’s really terrible.”

In April 1993, Monica Seles was at the height of her success when she was stabbed in the back during a changeover at a tournament in Hamburg. A man reached over a courtside railing and knifed her, leaving an inch-deep slit between her shoulder blades.

Seles returned to the game 27 months later and reached the 1995 U.S. Open final.

In an unrelated move earlier Tuesday, Kvitova withdrew from the Czech Republic team at next month’s Hopman Cup mixed-team tennis tournament because of an earlier foot injury.