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Petra Kvitova 'very happy' that suspected attacker in custody

PARIS -- Relaxed and smiling on the eve of the French Open, Czech star Petra Kvitova said she will try to focus exclusively on tennis even as police in her home country detain a suspect in the knife attack that left her with career-threatening injuries 18 months ago.

The No. 8 seed and two-time Wimbledon champion said Friday it was "great news'' that the unidentified man was in custody. "But probably the most, the happiest I will be, when the story will end, when everything will be done and finished,'' said Kvitova, who is coming off consecutive titles on clay in Prague and Madrid.

"I can't really say anything more, but so far I'm very happy with this, and I'm just here to play tennis and we will see what happen after.''

Kvitova, 28, was attacked in her apartment in Prostejov in December 2016 by a man posing as a utility worker who fled with a small amount of cash. Severed tendons in her left hand, incurred while defending herself, required four hours of surgery and months of patient rehab.

She returned to play earlier than expected in a dramatic opener at the 2017 French Open and has since won five WTA titles.

A Czech court spokesman said Thursday that the suspect had been detained. Police confirmed they had reopened the case, which was shelved last November due to a lack of new evidence, but have not released further details.

Kvitova, who recently told ESPN that her emotional recovery was more challenging than the physical rehab, had no choice but to try to put the unresolved case out of her mind, she said.

"Well, it was a little bit of a wait for me,'' Kvitova said Friday. "When that happened, I wasn't really wishing anything more than just they catch him. And then when I was focusing on the hand and I was really trying hard to be back or focusing on the rehab, then I a little bit forget and, you know, I have been telling myself that I can't really do anything. It's the police, and they do what they have to do. And in the end, hopefully they did great job.

"The timing isn't the best, but it's great news, right? So I should be happy. I am happy. I have great people around me, so they are still with me. They are supporting me. Especially on the court, of course. That's what matter right now."

Kvitova said she still feels "a little bit weird" when she is in public alone and anticipates she won't get complete relief from the unease until the case is wrapped up.

She said her recent successful streak on clay left her fatigued -- she withdrew from last week's Rome event and rested -- but generally she feels "well prepared'' for the French Open. She will face 87th-ranked Veronica Cepede Royg of Paraguay in the first round.

Kvitova's previous best showing at Roland Garros was in 2012, when she lost to eventual champion Maria Sharapova in the semifinals.

"It's been great 12 months so far,'' Kvitova said. "Of course, it was up and down, but having five titles since I came back, it's kind of unreal. But that's why I actually came back, not only to play tennis but to be better.''