Krejcikova doubles up in Paris

Czech singles champion triumphs alongside Siniakova to sweep both Roland-Garros titles

Siniakova Krejcikova Roland-Garros 2021©Corinne Dubreuil / FFT
 - Reem Abulleil

Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova first started playing doubles by chance in 2013, when they both needed a partner during the Roland-Garros junior event.

The Czech teenagers got on like a house on fire, and promptly won the girls' doubles title that year.

“We couldn't find a partner,” Siniakova told reporters after the pair won their second women’s doubles crown at Roland-Garros on Sunday. “We won it. From that time we decided to play with each other because it went really good.”

Having gone unbeaten in 24 doubles matches on the junior circuit, the Czech friends made a seamless transition to the professional circuit, where they swept the Roland-Garros and Wimbledon titles in 2018.

Seven years after their first outing as a doubles team in Paris, the Czech pair beat Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Iga Swiatek, 6-4, 6-2 in the women’s doubles final at Roland-Garros on Sunday.

Their third Grand Slam crown came a day after Krejcikova had become the surprise women’s singles champion.

The 25-year-old now joins an elite group of just six other women who have won both the singles and doubles in Paris in one year: Billie Jean King in 1972, Margaret Court in 1973, Chris Evert in 1974-75, Virginia Ruzici in 1978, Martina Navratilova in 1982 and 1984 and Mary Pierce in 2000.

“I just know from now on I can really enjoy because I have pretty much achieved everything I really wanted,” said the 25-year-old Krejcikova, who will return to the top of the doubles rankings on Monday.

“Now I can just improve, that's the only thing I can do, just improving.”

Krejcikova Siniakova Roland-Garros 2021©Corinne Dubreuil / FFT

Poland’s Swiatek, a surprise singles winner at Roland-Garros herself last year, was in awe of Krejcikova’s achievement in the French capital

“I’m just speechless, winning singles and doubles, it’s something else, congrats,” Swiatek told Krejcikova during the trophy ceremony.

The secret to a good doubles partnership is all about communication, Krejcikova and Siniakova both said.

“She was really helping me,” said Krejcikova, revealing she had experienced some pain in her legs and didn’t sleep very well after winning in singles. “I think we did a really nice tournament and really good communication, connection.”

Siniakova described their partnership as “a long journey” they are on together.

“We both keep fighting. We find our way to pro tennis. I think our relationship is still improving and we really good as a team. We also trying to be much closer when we off the court," explained the 25-year-old Siniakova.

Barbora Krejcikova, Katerina Siniakova, Roland Garros 2021, women's doubles final© Corinne Dubreuil/FFT

Swiatek, who only formed a doubles team with American Mattek-Sands in Miami in March, said it was “very difficult” to play an experienced team that communicates so well.

“Obviously, they have a good feeling of where they are staying on the court and who is going to take the next ball,” said Swiatek, who was playing just her third doubles event with Mattek-Sands.

“Next time we are going to be more prepared on how they are actually playing. Because Barbora changed the rhythm a few times, she played very soft, which was kind of tricky with the wind. And Katerina, she had really good hands, she picked up every ball that we played at her, which is really amazing. But we will be ready next time.”

Iga Swiatek, Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Roland Garros 2021, doubles final© Corinne Dubreuil/FFT

Krejcikova and Siniakova said they planned on celebrating by having dinner together and a glass of champagne.

“Right now after all of this happened, this last two weeks, last two days, I feel really relieved and relaxed,” said Krejcikova, who will team up with her friend at Wimbledon and the Tokyo Olympics later this summer.