Angelique Kerber stuns Serena Williams to win maiden Wimbledon title

Danny Woods
July 15, 2018

At 4 hours, 46 minutes, the match is now the second longest semifinal in Wimbledon history, trailing only Kevin Anderson's victory over John Isner on Friday.

So, despite her straight-sets defeat in the final to Kerber, who's winning a Grand Slam after 22 months, Serena has done incredibly well.

Earlier this year in the Australian Open, Kerber ran into the traps of crafty Su-Wei Hsieh in the fourth round.

She also beat Williams in the Australian Open final in 2016, then won that year's U.S. Open.

Just the fact that she reached the final was a record already. "Think about that, 14th match in a year and a half; you can't replicate match play in practice". She could barely walk out of her house eight months ago.

Williams had been the favourite despite it being only her fourth tournament since giving birth in September. To hear people say, 'Oh, she's a favorite.' Like, the last 16 months, I've played in four tournaments and was carrying another human half that time.

"I'm sure you will have your next Grand Slam title soon", said Kerber, now a three-time major champion. "Like I train in the morning and I spend the rest of the day with her, so I don't get to be with her the full day but a pretty good chunk out of the day".

Now she's dropped another. "I know that sounds weird, but I worked out a lot and I worked hard".

That's not going to work against an opponent of Kerber's quality.

The comeback just hit a brick wall. There are no holes.

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On break point, the left-hander landed the knockout blow with a fierce forehand victor down the line that left Williams grasping in vain to reach it. Kerber would bend real low, even putting a knee right on the grass to get a ball back. It's always an honor to share the court with her.

"We tried to improve my tennis by being more aggressive", Kerber explained.

Well, she couldn't. But if it hadn't been for the sterling performance and attitude of Angelique Kerber, she might have pulled it off.

"I look forward to it".

Kerber was broken only once.

An even start to the second followed, but Williams was unable to build sustained pressure as Kerber continued to display sublime defensive skills. Now she is back among the world's very best. She relished the moment she had dreamt about as a little kid, watching Graf on TV.

Those who want to continue pursuing their career after motherhood can still do it, she said. "I'm obviously disappointed but I can't be - because I'm literally just getting started".

"I knew that I had to play my best tennis against a champion like Serena", Kerber said.

In a role reversal from her wedding - at which Williams was a guest in May - Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, watched her friend alongside sister-in-law Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, from the royal box.

Toward the end, a reporter asked Williams how she'd turn her defeat into a happy story for her daughter. "I'll probably change the ending".

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