Over the next two weeks, we're looking back at 10 years’ worth of memorable marathons and top-shelf tennis from the WTA’s boldest and bravest.
See the entire women's and men's lists here, and relive each match with our video retrospectives.
It’s fitting that the team player of the decade would also win the best team match of the decade. In 2011, Kvitova led the Czech Republic to its first Fed Cup title since 1988, and then did it five more times. The peak moment in that run of domination came in the 2014 final, when she sealed another title for the Czechs in this three-hour thriller, in front of a delirious audience in Prague.
Played on the final day of the season between two top-tier champions with starkly contrasting styles, it was a highly anticipated match that lived up to all of its possibilities. Kvitova, like a hockey player with a killer slap shot, fired rocket after rocket across the net; Angelique Kerber, like an all-star goalie, did all she could to fend them off.
Spurred on by their teams and the moment, each woman staged a desperate, unlikely comeback. Kerber trailed 0–3 in the second set before winning it 6–4. Unfortunately for her, Kvitova turned the tables in the third set, when she also came back from 0–3 and used the crowd’s support to lift her to a 6–4 win—and the Fed Cup title—on her fourth match point.
“It’s for your country,” Kvitova said, “but always when you are not feeling great and you don’t have enough
energy, you always find something and I’m not sure where I found it. I’m just glad that I found it.”
Kvitova’s decade will be recalled for her two Wimbledon titles, but her ability to find it in Fed Cup, time and again, was as impressive.