Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Serena downs Venus to win third crown

Serena Williams celebrated American Independence Day by beating sister Venus 7-6, 6-2 to win her third Wimbledon title on Saturday.

Once five-times champion Venus dumped a backhand into the net on Serena’s fourth match point, the younger of the Williams sisters sank to her knees after finally winning her third singles crown at the grasscourt major following a six-year gap.

The 27-year-old quickly got back up on her feet to embrace Venus and then turned to lap up the applause of the 15 000 fans who had packed into a sun-kissed Centre Court.

”I feel so amazing. I’m so blessed … I can’t believe I’m holding it,” said a beaming Serena as she clutched the large Venus Rosewater dish.

”It’s named for Venus and she always wins. It hasn’t settled in that I’ve won yet.”

Venus, who had been bidding to become the first woman to win a hat-trick of titles since Steffi Graf in 1993, paid tribute to her sister.

”She had an answer to everything. She played the best tennis today so congratulations,” said the 29-year-old, who will be back on Centre Court later on Saturday for the doubles final with her sister.

”I don’t think the loss has settled in yet so I’m still smiling. I’ve had so many great times here and of course I’m looking forward to next year and the doubles final.”

There could hardly have been a better way to mark the Fourth of July. Yet Serena so nearly missed the party. In Thursday’s semifinal she had been match-point down against Elena Dementieva before mounting a remarkable comeback.

That great escape appeared to have energised the younger of the Williams sister and she produced a superb display of power and aggression to win her 11th grand slam title.

As has been the case in many contests between Venus and Serena, Saturday’s showdown turned out to be a passionless affair and the crowd struggled to get involved during the 97-minute final.

In a tight first set, Serena faced and saved two break points in the eighth game and the duo headed into a tiebreak, which the second seed raced away 7-3, clinching it with an exquisitely executed backhand lob.

That appeared to take the fight out of Venus and she surrendered her serve in the sixth game of the second set with a double fault and from then on, there was only one winner. – Reuters

Subscribe for R500/year

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them and get a 57% discount in your first year.

Related stories


If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Subscribers only

South Africa breaking more temperature records than expected

The country’s climate is becoming ‘more extreme’ as temperature records are broken

More top stories

South Africa breaking more temperature records than expected

The country’s climate is becoming ‘more extreme’ as temperature records are broken

Environmentalists are trying to save South Africa’s obscure endangered species

Scientists are digging for De Winton’s golden moles, working on the mystery of the riverine rabbit and using mesh mattresses to save the unique Knysna seahorse

Shadow states infest Africa’s democracies

Two recent reports show evidence that democracy in Africa is being threatened by private power networks

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…