Sharapova slipped to a 17th consecutive defeat to rival Williams in today’s Wimbledon semi-final, then addressed Mouratoglou branding Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka the “much better” player.
If Williams can beat Muguruza, the 33-year-old American would head to the U.S. Open in August with a shot at that feat. That was very much at the fore again on Thursday, as she simply brushed aside Sharapova – holder of 5 grand slam titles – to win easily 6-2,6-4.
“I could lose on Saturday”.
That jangling in her stomach let Radwanska back in the match before Muguruza finally won in three sets.
“You work all your life to achieve a grand slam final,” Muguruza, the winner of one career title to Williams’ 67, told reporters.
Muguruza had been playing in the semifinals at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time after reaching the quarterfinals at the last two French Opens.
But rather than dwell on those legacy-defining possibilities, Williams made it clear the only reason she is in such a privileged position is because she no longer frets about her place in the pantheon of tennis greats.
“It wasn’t easy out there, but when she stepped up her game I was able to step up mine”.
Sharapova saved one match point on her own serve, but the reprieve lasted just one game as Williams brought up another match point with an ace and thundered down a huge serve to clinch a one-sided victory.
Williams continued: “I’ve won so many Slam titles”.
“We’ve been friends for, like, so many years”, Williams said.
Radwanska, the runner-up to five-time Wimbledon champion Williams in 2012, used a six-game run to make things close against the hard-hitting Muguruza.
“She made me improve”, said Williams, who beat Muguruza at this year’s Australian Open, “so she has me on my toes”.
Now examine what Cornet, who was seeded 25th and only once previously had been as far as the fourth round at a major, said afterward: “It might be a bit premature to talk about her decline, but when she plays someone who finds the right tactics, she looks a bit lost on the court”. But the American does not want to think about anything and stay away from all the pressure that comes with these thoughts.
Muguruza, who won the first set 6-2, is playing in a major semifinal for the first time.
I think Serena will have a few nerves, and it wouldn’t surprise me in the least to see it go three sets.
At deuce in the final game, Radwanska held up her racket in the middle of the point to challenge a backhand from Muguruza that landed near the baseline.
“My mother, father and brother will come over -I didn’t want them to come before in case things changed”, she said. Williams is just two titles shy of Ms. Graf’s 22 and if she wins the US Open she’ll secure the calendar Grand Slam crown.
“Garbine has been around for a while”, Williams said post-semifinal match.
It was her 17th win in a row against the Russian.
The match between Williams and Sharapova was completely uneventful, with Williams winning 6-2, 6-4.
“My parents, they’re going to be in Barcelona watching me on the TV”.