Sunday, 16 July 2017

Muguruza Wimbledon Champ - and how !

Garbine Muguruza has joined an illustrious group of current players with two Grand Slam titles after her outstanding performance in the 2017 Ladies Wimbledon Final.

Not favoured by the majority of supposed experts, who were probably a little blinded by the emotion of a possible Venus win, Garbine should have been given more of a chance considering her preparation and match form pre final.

35 Grand Slam trophies are owned by the Williams sisters and Maria Sharapova.
Then next of those still active are those with two apiece: Sveta Kuznetsova, Vika Azarenka, Petra Kvitova and Angie Kerber.  Garbine can be added to these four now.

The beginning of the big match was an ace from Venus and a strong service hold from the five time champ.  Garbine's first point on her serve was a double fault but she held her nerve and serve, not dropping another point, two backhand volley winners sealing the game.

It took a couple of games but soon both players were into their stride and generally serves were being held with relative ease, the Venus forehand reliable and Muguruza confident in her attack.

Each saved a break point in games six and seven but the most significant moment in the final was the tenth game of set one where Venus held two set points following 2 forehand errors off the Spanish racquet. 
Garbine not only stood firm in this crisis, but she turned the match on its head from the minute the serve was held, significantly with an attack on the American forehand.

Three forehand mistakes and a double fault were too many gifts for Garbine not to take in the eleventh game and the 14th seed broke for 6-5 and held for a set lead.

Three games in succession became nine in a destruction so decisive and ruthless but beautiful to watch in itself.  Sad to see Venus brought to her knees by this wonderful display of relentless Serena-like tennis from the 23 year old, but there was no disgrace. The older sister had played a magnificent Wimbledon in her own right and losing 7-5 6-0 was just a reflection of the winners stunning exhibition.

14 winners and just 11 unforced errors is amazing from Garbine, when you think of how attacking her game is - Venus hit a few more errors but was more generous with her mistakes and that was pronounced in set two.

Obviously disappointed with the loss, Venus was all class at the interviews post match, genuinely delighted for Garbine's success and hopeful for her own future. (37 years young !)
Garbine, if she can remain fit, is truly the player for advertising the woman's tour.   Attractive and attacking tennis is what Serena Williams offers and Garbine attempts that type of game.  It's exciting, and not many others on the tour are capable of exhibiting it, certainly not at this level.

If Wimbledon 2017 has shown us many things, one is that women's tennis is alive and unpredictable - Karolina Pliskova is the new world number one despite again failing to make it past the second round.  Simona Halep is marginally behind her, while Vika Azarenka and Petra Kvitova are back and seriously challenging for their rightful positions amongst the top few.

Johanna Konta has moved up three spots to a career high of 4,  Garbine Muguruza has jumped ten places to number 5 and Venus Williams is improved by two back in the top ten at number 9.

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