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Serena Williams overcame a fight back from Agnieszka Radwanska to claim her fifth Wimbledon singles title in three sets with scores of 6-1, 5-7, and 6-2.
Williams dominated the first set in a little over 30 minutes before the third seed from Poland managed to find her feet. But Radwanska, who has been suffering from a virus for the last few days, made the most of the rain break after the first set and came out fighting to sneak the second. Williams managed to regroup in the third and won her 14th Grand Slam title just two years after a life-threatening illness.
“I can’t even describe it. I almost didn’t make it a few years ago,” an emotional Williams told the BBC, referring to her health problems. “I was in hospital but now I’m here again and it was so worth it. I’m so happy. Aggie played so well. That’s why she’s had such a great career, and she’s so young.”
A three setter never looked on the cards after Williams came out all guns blazing. Radwanska even went a break down 2-1 in the second before she found her form. She clawed back the break and hit some magical winners to show how she had made the final for the first time.
The American looked to have no answer at the end of the second set and her serve, which was so impressive throughout the tournament, failed to fire. But Williams showed her champion mentality and regrouped in the final set, completing one game in just 49 seconds by hitting four aces.
She served 17 aces in the final, bringing her total to 103, the highest of any man or woman at this year’s Wimbledon.
Her victory is the first by a lady over 30 since Martina Navratilova in 1990 and it looks like there will be more to come.
Radwanska will take confidence from this tournament though– her best grand slam to date – and she will be ranked number two in the world on Monday. Her consistent hitting, anticipation and finesse touch is a refreshing change reminiscent of Martina Hingis; and shows there is still a place in the game for those who can’t simply rely on big hitting from the baseline.
But it is Williams who has confirmed her position as one of the greatest – if not the greatest female ever to play the game with such an impressive victory.
Image Courtesy of Kat Shann