Saturday, July 7, 2007
Venus drops five games in winning fourth Wimbledon
By Keith Hawkins
She got better the deeper she went into the tournament.
That's what was written about Serena Williams after she won the Australian Open as an unseeded player back in January.
The same can now be said about her older sister Venus, who beat four seeded players -- each in straight sets -- to win Wimbledon on Saturday.
The win was her 35th career singles title -- second of 2007 -- and her first since she won this event two years ago.
What else did Venus accomplish on Saturday? Here are the top 10 facts resulting from her straight-sets win over Marion Bartoli.
1 -- First Grand Slam final appearance since she won Wimbledon in 2005. Between Wimbledon titles Venus played in five majors, never advancing past the quarterfinals.
2 -- Points she was from losing in the first round. Williams was serving at 5-4 down, 30-30, in the third set. Alla Kudryavtseva missed a backhand, and then Williams hit a 119 mph service winner to hold. She then broke in the next game and served out to win the match.
3 -- Single-digit seeds she beat: No. 2 Maria Sharapova in the fourth round; No. 5 Svetlana Kuznetsova in the quarterfinals; and No. 6 Ana Ivanovic in semis. Williams beat all three without dropping a set.
4 -- Wimbledon titles, joining Martina Navratilova (9), Steffi Graff (7) and Billie Jean King (6) as the only players with four or more Venus Rosewater Dishes. Williams is the only one of the four who has won all of her titles without the benefit of being the No. 1 seed. She was No. 5 in 2000, No. 2 in 2001, No. 14 in 2005 and was the 23rd seed in 2007.
5 -- Games won by Marion Bartoli in the final. The last player to win Wimbledon and lose fewer than five games was Steffi Graf in 1992, who beat Monica Seles 6-2, 6-1.
6 -- Grand Slam titles (four Wimbledon, two U.S. Open). Only her sister Serena with eight has more among active players. Williams record in Grand Slam finals is 6-6.
7 -- Career losses for Venus at the All England Club. Her Wimbledon record is 51-7.
8 -- Matches won at Wimbledon this year. In addition to seven singles matches, Venus also won her first-round doubles match before Serena was forced to pull out because of injuries.
9 -- Aces in second-round win against Hana Sromova, the most she had in one match during the fortnight. However, in her final five matches, Venus totaled just 12 aces.
10 -- Times in her career that Venus has beaten two players ranked in the top five on the WTA Tour in the same event (No. 2 Sharapova in the fourth round; No. 5 Kuznetsova in the quarters).
Keith Hawkins is the tennis editor for ESPN.com. ESPN.com news services contributed to this report.