A very disappointing match, I'm sad to say. I had hopes throughout the first seven or eight games of the first set as Vera was playing well, taking the odd point from Serena's serve, playing her game, outplaying Serena at times and showing no signs of nerves; plus Serena was already shrieking and that's always a sign that she's under pressure.
However, Serena broke and took the first set and in the second upped her game as Vera's began to crumble. Thus it was a straight sets win to Serena 6:3, 6:2 to give her her fourth Wimbledon Championship title and take her above Billy Jean King in the all time Ladies' role of honour for GS singles wins.
I may not like Serena, but I can't fault her play in the match; she really did play extremely well and deserved the win; the better lady did win. And in her chat on court and later on I admit I was impressed not only by her praise for Vera but also by her (for her) modesty. Has she finally grown up? Or is she still on her very best behaviour at GSs following her diabolical outburst at last year's US Open? I hope the former.
So well done Serena.
The men's doubles were won by an unseeded pair (the first for quite some time) Jurgen Melzer & Philipp Petzschner who beat the #16 seeds Robert Lindstedt & Horia Tecau 6:1, 7:5, 7:5. I was listening to the match more than watching it, but from what I heard and the few bits I saw Melzer and Petzschner (both good singles players, Petzschner in fact took Rafa to five sets here this year) played extremely well and it was a well deserved victory.
In the ladies' doubles there was yet more disappointment for poor Vera Zvonareva, as she and her partner Elena Vesnina were beaten in straight sets by Vania King & Yaroslava Shvedova 7:6, 6:2. Both pairs were unseeded, so yet more unseeded champions at this year of upsets Wimbledon.
The first set was really entertaining and great tennis and all four players played well. However, when Vania & Yaroslava took the tie break, Vera crumbled and broke down in floods of tears and simply never recovered. Elena did her best, in terms of taking over the captaincy, encouraging Vera and pretty much playing most of the shots as most shots Vera hit went out or into the net and she got more and more upset. But a doubles team can't consist of one player, so it wasn't surprising when the second set went to Vania & Yaroslava so easily. They played well from beginning to end and played with smiles on their faces all the time - it was deserved. But I did feel for Vera; two finals, no title.
It's men's finals day at Wimbledon; the day that brings the Championships to a close and it is not the final most people were expecting or hoping for, but it is a final where both men won their way through the rounds, which is something that can't always something be said.
Today Rafa takes on Tomas Berdych. On paper Rafa should be once again lifting the trophy and in effect defending his title. As Mac and many others said at the beginning of this year's Wimbledon, in essence there were two men defending their title: Roger from winning last year and Rafa from winning in 2008 and being unable to defend his title in 2009. But this year's championships have had so many upsets, could it be that another one is on the cards?
Rafa leads the head-to-head 7:3 and has won the last six meetings, including Wimbledon 2007 and Indian Wells this year, and has beaten Berdych on clay, grass and hard court. Berdych's wins came in 2005 and 2006 and were both on hard courts. But Berdych has shown himself to be in superb form in this championship beating the World #2 and #3 seeds and doing so fairly comfortably.
Thus far Berdych has not shown any real nerves or the 'mental fragility' but this is his first GS final - will that tell against him? He's facing the World #01, a seven time GS Champion, the man undefeated at Wimbledon since 2008, the man who has got better and better. Will nerves show? They didn't really when he was putting out the World #02, a sixteen times GS Champion, the Wimbledon defending Champion for whom Wimbledon Centre Court was his second home. But finals are different. I hope nerves don't get to him, I hope he comes out hitting and balanced and playing the game we know he can play.
I don't expect nerves to really get to Rafa, no matter how badly he wants to win this (his favourite tournament apparently, his replica trophy from 2008 is in pride of place and hasn't tarnished at all, unlike some trophies). After all he has won seven other GS titles and been in two other finals - here at Wimbledon where he lost to Roger both times. But no one is without nerves, not even great champions.
I'm hoping for a darn fine match, a match to rival Rafa vs. Murray. I won't say a match to rival the last three years at Wimbledon, because I'm not sure that can happen - go on Rafa and Tomas prove me wrong *g* But a match that entertains, that makes up for yesterday, a match that isn't won easily, even as with the Murray match it is won in three sets. A match where the runner up can hold his head up after and know he did his best, but on the day was beaten by the better man.
I'm sure you all know whom I want to win *g* And I think he will, as long as it's the Rafa of the round of sixteen, quarters and semis who steps onto court. But I don't think it'll be an easy win and I'm sure Rafa is not counting his chickens or already holding the trophy aloft.
Good luck with both Rafa and Tomas. May the better man win.
And there is still another title to be played for today: the mixed doubles where Wesley Moodie & Lisa Raymond USA (the #11 seeds) take on Leander Paes & Cara Black (the #2 seeds). I think Paes and Black will win this.
And one bit of good news for Brits. GB will win a title at this year's Wimbledon as the Boys' Doubles final is an all British affair! Both teams are unseeded and both won yesterday in three sets. Do we finally have some up and coming players? Or will they peter out like so many before them have done?