We all have a lot to thank Serena Williams for.
The pressure seemed to be mounting on Williams as she came into the final match at Wimbledon 2015.
Williams completed what is known as the “Serena Slam“.
“Like, you can’t be disappointed with winning all four in a row – all four trophies are at my house right now so that’s kind of cool”. The 33-year-old Swiss has defied those who dared to write him off when he lost last year’s final to the Serb in five gruelling sets. Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova had one title and Graf didn’t win a Grand Slam after the age of 29.
Having beaten Williams at the French Open past year, she had gone into the final promising she would not be over-awed.
Not a bad run.
There is no denying the fact that she was overwhelming favorite to win against a player who is 12 years her junior.
Four years ago Williams described herself as “on my death bed” after suffering a pulmonary embolism that contributed to nearly a year out of the sport.
On Saturday at the All England Club came the exclamation point to her turnaround.
But Williams has a busy summer leading into New York. Muguruza, a 21-year-old Spaniard, made the final a fascination. But her story is about so much more than the numbers associated with her greatness.
The Williams entourage was a constant feature at Wimbledon, from stars like balladeer John Legend and rapper Drake to regulars, sister Venus and family matriarch Oracene Price. Williams said. “Hopefully, people would be really cheering me on, to like push me over the edge and give me that extra strength I need to go for this historic moment”.
But a amusing thing happened on the way to the thrashing.
Williams pulled out to a 5-1 lead and looked ready to finish Muguruza off quickly.
Williams served for the match at 5-1. And so do the rest of us who love her and her body.
Williams served for the match at 5-3.
Alas, Muguruza succumbed. Her forehand, the less steady side, produced an error wide on a second match point to end the one hour, 23-minute contest. However, the 21 year old Spaniard did not leave without winning the affection from the crowd present at Centre Court.
But Muguruza kept getting off the mat, and the Brits were going wild.
“I’ve never been this close, so we’ll see”. Muguruza started with a double fault and now there were more butterflies than fight.
Saturday’s win give Williams six championships in three of tennis’ top events – Australian Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open. I’ve been taking time every match.
The appreciation for this new-found battler flowed over into the awards ceremony.
At the presentation ceremony a tearful Muguruza was given a prolonged standing ovation, with Williams again joining the applause.
“Physically I have to make sure I feel good: right now I feel really good so I’m interested to see how I’ll feel going into the hard court season”.
For the 20th-ranked Muguruza, the problem was Williams. If she didn’t, she’d be holding the runner-up trophy before she knew it.
Muguruza, a news conference delight with a rare streak of candidness, was asked about Williams’s on-court comment.
Four years on she has no real tennis rivals.
She has cemented her place in the history books, and has shown no signs of stopping any time soon. In his semifinal victory over Andy Murray on Friday, Federer’s top service speed was 126.
‘Oh my gosh!’ she said. “She’s incredible. That’s someone I’m proud to say I know”.
“I didn’t want to talk about the Serena Slam – I was just more focused on winning Wimbledon“. Serena Williams, though, is a bit different.