14 in ’14: Petkovic Captures Cup Crown

At the 2014 installment of the Volvo Car Open, the 14th seed walked away with the title, a dancing Andrea Petkovic winning 7-5, 6-2 over Jana Cepelova to capture the biggest title of her career.

Petkovic came through a draw that was filled with plenty of surprises and upsets, the former world No. 9 rising to the top with wins over former champion Sabine Lisicki, 2012 finalist Lucie Safarova, Australian Open semifinalist Genie Bouchard and a streaking Cepelova, who had defeated Serena Williams in the second round.

MORE: Medina Garrigues/Shvedova Win Doubles | Petkovic’s Local Connection | Q&A with Andrea

Petkovic, the 14th seed here, won the opening three games of the match before Cepelova captured the next four. It was then that the 26-year-old ran off nine games in a row to move closer to the crown. Petkovic closed out the match by holding to love.

The German has a unique South Carolina connection: her father, Zoran, played tennis at the University of South Carolina in the early 1980s and remains one of the most successful players in the school’s history, where he played as the No. 1 seed for four years.

Charleston comes as Petkovic’s biggest career win and her third title overall. She won in Bad Gastein and Strasbourg in 2009 and 2011 before she suffered a series of injuries in 2012 and 2013, dropping from a career high No. 9 way down to No. 182 in the fall of 2012.

“It’s been a roller coaster,” Petkovic said on ESPN2 after the match. “But I wanted to get back to having fun playing this sport – I love it. And I can’t remember a week where I’ve had this much fun in my career.”

“I know she is a great player, and you know, it’s tough to play for me today because I was a little bit tired from other matches,” Cepelova told reporters. “But I tried to fight, but she’s a great player. She was better today.”

Cepelova had a banner week, the world No. 78 beating the two-time defending champion Serena for her first-ever top 15 win before capturing three more matches to make her way into her first-ever WTA final.