WIMBLEDON: Serena Williams has vowed to continue working after suffering the heaviest defeat of her entire career in a grand slam final.
Williams, who was bidding to claim her 24th major trophy, could only win four games against Simona Halep in the Wimbledon final on Saturday. Losing in just 56 minutes to make it one of the shortest matches to have ever taken place at that stage of the tournament. Williams headed into the clash with a winning 9-1 head-to-head record against the Romanian and defeated her earlier this year.
“I don’t know if there’s anything I could have done differently. I think I gave a great effort for this fortnight.” Said Williams.
“I just think Simona just played her heart out. If anything, I could just learn to be like that.’
“So I don’t think there’s anything too much differently I could have done today.”
Since returning to the tour in 2018 after the birth of her daughter, Williams has suffered numerous disappointments in the majors. She also reached the final of Wimbledon last year before losing in straight sets to Angelique Kerber. At the US Open, she fell short to Naomi Osaka and was embroiled in controversy following her clash with the umpire. Then in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open in January, she lost a 5-1 lead against Karolina Pliskova in the final set.
Despite the blips, the 37-year-old is confident of finding a light at the end of the tunnel. Admitting that a lack of match play in recent months has hindered her ability to play her best at the crucial moments. Wimbledon is only her sixth tournament of the season. Williams has been troubled by knee and ankle problems in recent months.
“I just have to figure out a way to win a final. Maybe it is playing other finals outside of Grand Slams would be really helpful just to kind of get in the groove so by the time I get to a Grand Slam final I’m kind of used to what to do and how to play.”
Praise for the new Wimbledon queen
Regardless of her lackluster performance, which featured 26 unforced errors, the former world No.1 is refusing to take any credit away from Halep. Who has become the 10th active player on the WTA Tour to win multiple grand slam titles and the first from her country to win Wimbledon.
“When someone plays lights out, there’s really not much you can do. You just have to understand that that was their day today. Hopefully, they can play like that more often, more consistently.” She said.
“Hopefully I can raise the level of my game sometimes.”
It is unknown as to how many more times we will see the seven-time champion at Wimbledon, who has won 107 matches on the grass. She is currently the fourth oldest player to have a WTA ranking. The oldest is her sister Venus, who is 40.
“I feel like I’m still incredibly competitive or else I wouldn’t really be out here.” The 23-time grand slam champion insisted.
“For the most part, I feel like I’m on the right track. I’m just going in the right direction in terms of getting back to where I need to be.”
From now until the US Open, Williams has confidently said that two tournaments are adequate preparation for her. Explaining that she doesn’t want to ‘overdo it’ in light of her recent physical problems. The tournaments she is set to play is the Rogers Cup and Cincinnati Open.
Williams’ stats from Wimbledon final
- First serves in – 68%
- First serves won – 59%
- Second serves won – 47%
- Fastest serve – 118 mph
- Winners – 17
- Forced errors – 16
- Unforced errors – 26
- Net points won – 4/11
- Baselies points won – 17/52
Caroline Wozniacki To Face Serena Williams In Farewell Match
Details have been released about a special event that will take place in honour of the former world No.1.
After announcing her retirement from tennis at the start of next year, Caroline Wozniacki has confirmed that she will play one final match in her home country before hanging up her racket for good.
Danish media have reported that the 2018 Australian Open champion will play at the Royal Arena in Copenhagen next May. A multi-purpose arena that can hold a capacity of up to 12,500 people for sporting events. Described by the promoters as Wozniacki’s ‘final match’ on Danish soil, she will play against rival and friend Serena Williams.
“The time has come when I stop my career and I am very much looking forward to playing my very last home game in front of such a large audience. It will be something very special and a day I really look forward to.” Wozniacki told tv2.dk.
“The end point of my career cannot be better than at home and against tennis’ greatest female player ever. It’s going to be a magnificent night I’ll never forget, I’m sure.” She added.
Wozniacki has played Williams 11 times on the WTA Tour, but has only won one of their meetings. Which was at the 2012 Miami Open. It is not the first time the two have played an exhibition match against each other. In 2016 Williams won their encounter in Madison Square Garden, New York. Meanwhile, last year Wozniacki also played Williams’ sister Venus in Denmark to mark her triumph at the Australian Open.
The 29-year-old will be hoping that the upcoming showdown will be the perfect send off as she exits the sport. During her career, Wozniacki has won 30 WTA titles and spent 71 weeks as world No.1. She has also won 432 hard court matches, which is more than any other non-American player on the women’s tour.
“I want to thank everyone for the incredible support they have shown me throughout my career and I hope that as many people as possible want to come and give me perfect send off. I would be very grateful for that.” She said.
The farewell match will take place on May 18th, which is exactly a week before the start of the French Open for Williams.
Indian Wells voted as the best WTA Premier Mandatory Tournament of the 2019 season
The tournament awards are broken down into four categories, according to the four different levels of WTA Tournaments.
The BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells has been voted as the winner of the Tournament of the Year Award in the WTA Premier Mandatory category for the sixth consecutive year and the 11th time overall.
Dubai was voted as the winner in the WTA Premier 5 Category. There were two ties in the WTA Premier category and in the WTA International categories.
St. Petersburg won the WTA Premier Award fo the second consecutive year, while Stuttgart received this award for the 10th time.
Auckland won the WTA International category Award for the fourth time, while Acapulco received this accolade for the 12th time.
Petra Kvitova received the Karen Krantzcke Sportmanship Award for the seventh straight year and the eighth time overall. The list of past winners of this Award features Kim Clijsters, Elena Dementieva, Ana Ivanovic, Lindsay Davenport, Chris Evert and Evonne Goolagong-Cawley. The Karen Krantzcke Sportmaship Award is presented to the player, who observes the rules of fair play, shows respect for others and is gracious on and off the court.
“Receiving this award for the eighth consecutive year makes me very proud and means so much for me. Being recognized by my colleagues for sportsmanship and fair play is an honour as I always pride myself on treating my opponents with respect. I hope to inspire the future generations to love the sport of tennis as much as I do”, said Kvitova.
Carla Suarez Navarro Set For One Last Season As A Player
The former top 10 player has outlined her retirement plans for 2020 as she embarks upon a farewell tour.
Next year will be the final time tennis fans will see Carla Suarez Navarro on the tour after the Spaniard announced her retirement on Tuesday.
The former world No.6 confirmed her future plans during a press conference in Barcelona. She will play one full season in 2020 before walking away from the sport after playing for more than 10 years on the WTA Tour. Suarez Navarro is currently the second highest ranked female tennis player from Spain after Garbine Muguruza and is currently 55th in the world.
“The 2020 season will be my last year in the professional tennis circuit,” wtatennis.com quoted the 31-year-old as saying. “The sport has been a fundamental part of my life – it has given me immense joy and I cannot be more grateful for all the experiences that it has allowed me to live. At this time, I notice that the time has come to complete a beautiful chapter and begin to enjoy other areas of life. Tennis will always be in me.”
Known for her one-handed backhand shot, which is a rare occurrence in the women’s game, Suarez Navarro has enjoyed a successful career since her breakthrough in 2008. The year when she reached the quarter-finals of the French Open as a qualifier. During her career, she claimed two WTA titles with the biggest being at the 2016 Qatar Open. She also finished runner-up at nine other tournaments.
“Tennis right now has a very high demand. To be high in the ranking you need absolute consistency, a world-class level of physical conditioning and a 24-hour daily psychological commitment. I have been in high competition for more than 15 years and have lived through these realities since the beginning of my adolescence. These are lessons that have formed me as a person and that will serve me for a lifetime,” Suárez Navarro explained.
“I want to enjoy one last season with the same professionalism as always. I am going to do a quality preparation, my whole team is going to travel with me from the month of January and I plan to compete until the end of the season. My desire is clear: to be proud of this last effort when I reach the end of the road.”
Suarez Navarro has also enjoyed success in the doubles where she peaked at a high of 11th back in 2015. Her trio of trophies was won alongside Muguruza between 2014-2015. The duo also reached the semi-finals of the 2014 French Open.
Representing her country, the three-time Olympian has also featured in 15 Fed Cup ties. Including Spain’s clash with Belgium earlier this year when she won all three of her matches (two singles and one doubles). Overall, she has a win-loss record of 16-11 in the competition.
Despite knowing that next year will be her last as a player, the Spaniard has big ambitions for 2020. Including a fourth consecutive appearance at the Olympic Games.
“My goals are going to be as high as ever,” she stated. “I want to try to finish the year in the Top 10 because I know what it takes to be there. I am very excited to participate in another Olympic Games and, as always, I will have the Grand Slams in mind. Although it is the last season of my career, my mentality will be exactly the same: work, humility and ambition.”
Suarez Navarro will start her final season at the ASB Classic in Auckland.
Four facts about Suarez Navarro’s career
- Her career prize money currently stands at $11,580,886. The third highest of all time for a Spanish woman.
- Has won 509 matches so far in her career against 336 loses.
- Between 2013-2016 Suarez Navarro finished each season in the top 20 for both singles and doubles.
- She has played in 43 grand slam tournaments and hasn’t missed the main draw of a major event since losing in the second round of qualifying at the 2011 Wimbledon Championships.
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