Angelique Kerber targets maiden Wimbledon title

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Angelique Kerber has her heart set on winning a first Wimbledon title after booking a return to the final.

The German beat Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-3 in their semi-final and is one win away from a third grand slam triumph.

Her previous trophy successes – at the Australian Open and US Open – came in the same glorious 2016 season as her first run to the final at the All England Club.

On that occasion, Kerber was beaten by Serena Williams in a thrilling encounter.

She will now get a rematch with the seven-time champion after Williams beat Julia Goerges in the second semi-final.

The form of two years ago sent Kerber to world number one and she is again playing at a similarly high level after a horror 2017 campaign.

“Wimbledon is a really special place. I think everybody knows this tournament. It would be really special to win,” she said.

“But it’s still a long way off. I know that I have to play my best tennis in the final.

“For sure it’s really special. I know it will be a full house there. The atmosphere will be amazing.

“I’m looking forward to having the feeling again.

“With 2016, all the success, 2017, with a few up and downs, to coming back this year, I think I learned so many things about me.

“The last years, not only 2016 and 2017, also the years before, give me a lot of experience and to know what is really important in life, what’s not, and what you have to focus on.”

Her semi-final was billed as attack versus defence and it was the solid, reliable manner of Kerber that prevailed as she let an erratic Ostapenko, who was going for winners on almost every shot, hand her a swathe of free points.

Ostapenko had an off-day against Kerber in the semi-final.

Ostapenko had an off-day against Kerber in the semi-final.

Ostapenko won the French Open in 2017 by playing in this manner and knows no other way, but she had an off day and, despite hitting 30 winners, it was her 35 unforced errors that cost her any chance of progressing.

In comparison, there were just seven errors off the racket of Kerber and that tells the story of where the match was won.

“She is a player who tries to be aggressive from the first point,” Kerber added.

“For me it was important to be moving well, have patience, and also take my chances when I had the chance to be aggressive myself.”

Having seen her defence of the French Open end at the first hurdle last month, Ostapenko was pleased with her Wimbledon campaign but knows where she has to improve.

“I’m working on my consistency,” she said. “It’s not like I want to hit every ball so hard.

“Sometimes in the match that happens because I really want to hit a winner, I want to win the point.

“But in practice, of course I’m working on longer rallies.”

Most popular

Serena Williams shows her class by thrashing Julia Goerges to reach Wimbledon final

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
Next stop is the final: Serena Williams

Serena Williams put on a superb display of power and athleticism at Wimbledon to reach her 30th Grand Slam singles final.

The 23-time Slam champion, who will equal Margaret Court’s all-time haul of major titles if she beats Angelique Kerber on Saturday, needed just an hour and 10 minutes to defeat Julia Goerges 6-2 6-4.

Williams, who gave birth to daughter Olympia just over 10 months ago, produced the most impressive display of her comeback and will now attempt to stage a repeat of the 2016 final, when she defeated German Kerber in straight sets.

Williams said: “It’s crazy. I don’t even know how to feel. I didn’t expect to do so well in my fourth tournament back. I just feel when I don’t have anything to lose, I can play so free. It’s definitely not normal for me to be in a Wimbledon final. I’m just enjoying every moment.”

Goerges was playing in her first slam semi-final and Williams her 35th, so it would have been no surprise if the German was a little over-awed, but far from it.

The 29-year-old came out hitting the ball cleanly and landing plenty of winners but, after four very competitive games, Williams pulled away.

Goerges was the first top-50 player the American had faced during the tournament so there was a sense she had not been properly tested, but Williams was simply on another level.

Chasing down Goerges’ powerful shots and sending them arrowing into the corners, Williams, who has not lost a Wimbledon semi-final since being beaten by sister Venus in 2000, looked a woman on a mission.

She reeled off the final four games of the opening set and quickly moved in front in the second. Goerges clawed her way back from 2-5 to 4-5, breaking the Williams serve for the only time in the match in the ninth game.

But Goerges was broken again in the final game and, although she hit 20 winners to 16 for Williams, there was no doubt who was the superior player.

The win extended Williams’ unbeaten run at Wimbledon to 20 matches, dating back to a third-round loss against Alize Cornet in 2014.

Most popular

Related Sections

Roger Federer crashes out of Wimbledon after five-set defeat to Kevin Anderson

Andy Sims 11/07/2018
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Roger Federer crashed out of Wimbledon after a marathon five-set shoot-out with big-serving Kevin Anderson in the quarter-finals.

The eight-time champion was two sets up and had a match point in the third, but almost three hours later he trudged off on the end of a seismic 2-6 6-7 (5/7) 7-5 6-4 13-11 upset.

Federer found himself scheduled on Court One having been ousted from his usual Centre Court domain for the first time in three years.

But he found himself in even more unfamiliar territory with an inspired Anderson’s relentless, thudding serve eventually overpowering the 20-time grand slam winner.

The setting was not the only thing alien to the defending champion.

When Anderson broke in the second set it was the first time the Swiss had dropped serve at this Wimbledon.
In their four previous meetings Anderson, 32, had not taken a set off Federer. Nor had anyone over the last 34 sets Federer had played at the All England Club, until Anderson nicked the third.

That meant Federer had equalled but not bettered his previous best set-winning streak which came between the third round in 2005 and the final in 2006. But that turned out to be the least of his worries.

There was little sign of the drama which unfolded when Federer raced through the first set in 26 minutes.

Yet Anderson, the eighth seed, was meant to pose a far greater threat to Federer than his previous four opponents, and so it proved.

The first hiccup surfaced at the start of the second set with Anderson breaking the Federer serve and ending that run of holds.

Normal service was resumed for a while at least as Federer held to love before immediately breaking back and taking the ensuing tie-break.

Anderson was sticking to his guns, though, and after saving match point the eighth seed secured another break of the Federer serve and snatched a set back.

When Anderson broke again in the fourth, Federer was suddenly on the ropes.

The Swiss lost the set in a flurry of aces, with Anderson’s relentless, powerful serve sending the match into a decider.

The final set lasted 90 minutes, and it was captivating stuff. Federer eked out a break point at 4-3, Anderson quickly snuffed it out, then Anderson served to stay in the match, and did so to love.

On they went, both holding to love for 10-10, but at 11-11 it was Federer who blinked first, a double fault handing Anderson a rare break point which he converted.

Anderson needed four more booming serves to reach a first Wimbledon semi-final, and he found them.
Federer had been pursuing a 13th Wimbledon semi-final and a 44th appearance in the last four of a grand slam.

“I’m not quite sure what to say, I had to try my best to keep fighting,” Anderson told the BBC.

“I scraped through the third and fourth sets and by the end I thought I did a great job. Beating Roger Federer will be one to remember, certainly in such a close match.

“I just kept telling myself to keep believing, and that today it would be my day. That’s the mindset you need against someone like Roger. I just gave it my all and I’m ecstatic to get through that.”

Most popular