Kvitova attacker faces up to 12 years in prison

Petra Kvitova took part in the WTA Wuhan Open tennis tournament in September and is currently the world number four. (AFP pic)

PRAGUE: The man who attacked two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova with a knife at her Czech home in December 2016 is facing up to 12 years in prison, a prosecutor’s office said Friday.

The 33-year-old culprit was charged with blackmail, among other things, on Friday, the office said in a statement.

“If found guilty of the… crimes, he is facing five to twelve years in prison,” it added.

The 28-year-old Kvitova, currently the world number four, suffered career-threatening injuries to her playing left hand as she fought off the intruder at her home in the eastern Czech town of Prostejov.

Police said the attacker did not know whose flat he was entering after pretending to be a technician checking boilers.

Despite grim forecasts by doctors, who even warned she might lose her fingers, the 2011 and 2014 Wimbledon champion returned to the sport in time for last year’s French Open.

Kvitova, who slumped as low as 29th in the world after the attack, has won five WTA tournaments this year and secured a place in the WTA Finals in Singapore later this month.