Wimbledon | Angie spoils Serena’s day
The women’s final was slightly overshadowed by the Novak Djokovic and Rafa Nadal semi-final which had been suspended overnight as a consequence of running out of time on Friday, thanks to the six-hour 36-minute marathon which preceded it!
As a result it started some three hours after the scheduled time, no doubt increasing the nervous tension which a major event like this provokes.
This is one of the best moments of my career so far, Angelique Kerber
In Serena Williams’ case perhaps, that wouldn’t have been the case. The ‘supermum’ had it all tied up as far as the pundits were concerned – Angelique Kerber needn’t turn up, seemed to be the message!
As Wimbledon’ own Daily Report, outlining the day’s play declared, ‘Nothing today, though, should eclipse the Serena Show.’ And with two Duchesses sitting in the front row of the Royal Box, one having declared herself a Serena supporter, the situation certainly looked dire for the German opposition.
Somehow, Kerber failed to read the script.
From the moment the pair stepped on court, the German seeded 11, showed that she was not there to make up the numbers and assist Serena Williams to her 24th grand slam title to equal Margaret Court’s record.
She made a sensational start with some strong returns combining solid defence and probing groundstrokes, forcing Serena into an unforced forehand error to get off to the start she wanted – a break.
Serena struck back to level at 2-all.
At 3-all Serena produced two double faults to hand triple break point opportunities to Kerber – she saves two but a loose forehand gives her opponent a 3-4 lead.
Kerber now looks to be well in command as she break the Williams serve for a third time to snatch the set 6-3 as the Williams unforced error tally continues to mount.
The 30-year-old German opens the second strongly as Williams struggles keep abreast but does despite her mounting frustrations.
The pair hold serve until the sixth game when Kerber lands a series of shots on the line to break for a crucial 4-2 lead and, while Williams held and occasionally pushed Kerber, the German held her nerve to complete a very satisfactory and comprehensive 6-3 6-3 victory after 65-minutes to become the Wimbledon champion at her second appearance in the final. It also avenged her first loss at the hands of Serena Williams two years ago.
Kerber is the third German to lift the Venus Rosewater dish after Cilly Aussem in 1931and Steffi Graf (1988-1989, 1991-1993, 1995-1996) and could hardly contain her tears of joy at her achievement.
Kerber, speaking to the BBC, said of her win: “It’s just a dream come true.
“First, I have to say: ‘Serena, you’re a great person and a champion. You are coming back and you are such an inspiration for everybody, for all of us.
“It’s amazing and I’m sure you will have your next grand slam title soon. I’m really, really sure. Congrats again for coming back’.
“I knew I had to play my best tennis against a champion like Serena. It’s always an honour to share a court with her.”
But as far as she was concerned: “This is one of the best moments of my career so far,” she said after adding the Wimbledon title to the Australian and US Open crowns she won in 2016.
And as for Serena Williams, this was her first grand-slam final in what was her fourth tournament since giving birth just 10 months ago. “I was really happy to get this far,” Williams said after the match, her voice quavering , obviously hiding tears of disappointment.