Saturday, 9 July 2016
SERENA WILLIAMS WINS SEVENTH WIMBLEDON TITLE, 22ND SLAM
After coming up short in three consecutive majors, Williams tied Steffi Graf’s mark with a 7-5, 6-3 win over Angelique Kerber in Saturday’s Wimbledon final.
“It makes the victory even sweeter to know how hard I worked for it,” Williams said on the court after the match. “I don’t know what else to say. I’m so excited.”
In a tight, high-quality match, the best server in the history of women’s tennis ultimately prevailed over one of the game’s top returners.
Kerber won the opening coin toss and elected to receive, as she had broken Williams five times to win the Australian Open final earlier this year. She would have no such luck Saturday. Williams dominated on serve, firing 13 aces, winning 88 percent of her first-serve points and only allowing one break point throughout the entire match.
“I knew that I needed to hold serve because I really wasn’t feeling her serve that well the way I had earlier times we’ve played before,” Williams told ESPN after the match. “The conditions were really windy so I was like OK, I absolutely have to hold serve out here.”
Kerber held her own, though, staying dedicated to her game plan. After saving three break points in her opening service game, Kerber got into a rhythm. She drew Williams into rallies, which she dominated by making Williams chase the ball from side-to-side.
But needing to hold to stay in the opening set with Williams up 6-5, Kerber finally blinked and Williams moved one set closer to the title.
The quality continued into the second set, with Kerber trying her best to push Williams off her game. Kerber earned her first break point of the match at 3-3, but Williams closed any opening she had with an emphatic ace.
“This is how Serena is playing,” Kerber said in her post-match press conference. “I had one break point, and I couldn’t do nothing. I was trying to be tough, to being in the match, trying to fight until the last point … Serena was today the one who won the match.”
Williams would not be denied in her quest for history, breaking Kerber at 4-3. After holding strong to win her seventh Wimbledon title, Williams fell to the ground in celebration, and perhaps, a bit of relief.
Saturday’s win was Williams’ unprecedented ninth title over the age of 30. Her seventh title came 14 years after her first in 2002.
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