Federer Wins Eighth Wimbledon Title


Published on July 17 2017 6:19 am
Last Updated on July 17 2017 6:19 am


Roger Federer defeated Marin Cilic in straight sets Sunday to win his eighth Wimbledon title, the most Wimbledon titles by any man in tennis history. It's also his 19th Grand Slam title, extending his own record for men's singles. Entering this year's tournament, he was tied with Pete Sampras and William Renshaw with seven Wimbledon titles.

Federer is just the second man to win eight titles at a single Grand Slam, joining Rafael Nadal, who is a 10-time champion at the French Open. And Federer's Wimbledon title came in dominant fashion, winning all 22 completed sets he played in at this year's tournament. He is the second man in the Open Era to win Wimbledon without dropping a set, joining Bjorn Borg in 1976. This is the second time Federer has won a major without dropping a set, along with the 2007 Australian Open, making him the third man in the Open Era to win multiple major titles without dropping a set, along with Borg and Nadal.

This is the sixth time in his career that Federer has won multiple Grand Slam titles in a single calendar year, breaking a tie with Roy Emerson for the most by a man in tennis history. It's the first time he's done so since 2009 and if he wins the US Open in August, it would be the fourth time in his career he was three Grand Slam titles in a single year. All other men in the Open Era have done that six times combined.

Federer, 35, is the oldest man in the Open Era to win a Wimbledon title, surpassing Arthur Ashe, who was 31 years old when he won it 1975. Having already won the Australian Open this year, Federer now joins Rod Laver as the only men aged 30 or older to win multiple Grand Slam titles in a calendar year. Laver was 31 when he swept all four Grand Slam titles in 1969.

Federer's win secured the grip of the Big Four of Federer, Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray on Wimbledon. Lleyton Hewitt (2002) was the last player who wasn't one of the Big Four to win the Wimbledon men's title.

Hingis, Murry Claim Women's Doubles Title

It began with a simple text message and ended with a Grand Slam trophy.

Having decided to end her partnership with Leander Paes, with whom she was beaten in the final at Wimbledon last year, Martina Hingis contacted Jamie Murray just before this year's mixed doubles event with a simple question.

"It was just like, 'Hi Jamie, want to play with me?'" Hingis said after she and Murray beat defending champions, Henri Kontinen of Finland and another Briton, Heather Watson, 6-4, 6-4 to win the title Sunday.

"For every British player or for any tennis player, you want to win Wimbledon. Whether it's the singles, doubles or mixed. When you come back here, it's just a special thing, a special occasion. I was hoping for a 'yes,' definitely."

Murray, though, did not see the text until the following morning. "He left me hanging overnight," Hingis said, laughing. "I was like 'Oh, my God, did he read it? Did he not?'"

"I'm not used to 'no.' I don't take 'no' as an answer. But I would understand, especially here, it's always tough. I understand in the past guys would have said no because they really want to focus on [men's] doubles, only because it's three-out-of-five [sets]. This is the only tournament that still does it. It is definitely easier to ask somebody on the other three grand slams and not Wimbledon."

As a woman who had already won 17 Grand Slam doubles titles, not to mention singles crowns -- the first of which came at Wimbledon 20 years ago -- Hingis, 36, is a great catch for anyone who wants to win a major title.

Sunday's win took her overall Grand Slam tally to 23 and five of her six mixed wins have come since the beginning of 2015. For Murray, it was a second Wimbledon mixed doubles title, 10 years after his first, and his fourth Slam win overall, to add to his two men's doubles titles with Bruno Soares.

The Scot admitted that, had it been anyone else asking, he probably would have said no. Mixed doubles is very popular at Wimbledon and with a guaranteed British winner, the fans probably would have been happy either way. But it's usually considered a bonus, something extra to play for if the bread and butter -- the men's and women's doubles -- does not go according to plan.

"The [men's] doubles for me is obviously my biggest goal of the year," Murray said. "It's going to take something pretty special to potentially take my eye off the ball with it. But it was a great opportunity. She's won everything, won so many mixed as well. I knew I could do well with her. It was kind of an easy decision."

And it proved to be a good one as a nearly full Centre Court crowd gathered to see them edge out Kontinen and Watson, who tested them more than any other pair had done in the previous rounds.

Kontinen, the men's doubles No. 1, pressured them with his power, and Watson hit some fine returns, but the experience of Hingis, in particular, was crucial. With Andy Murray rushing on to the grounds to see the final stages, the top seeds saved three break points on the Murray serve before a return in the net by Watson handed them victory.

Muguruza Silences Venus Williams

The normally silent laptop keyboards lining the tables of the media section on Centre Court suddenly began clicking and clacking.

The stories of Venus Williams' remarkable return to the pinnacle of Wimbledon at 37 years old were coming together for writers who presumed they were watching history.

Williams had a 5-4 lead on Garbine Muguruza in the first set and looked destined to wrap it up, holding a 40-15 lead in the 10th game. If she had just won the next point, or even the one after that, she would have been one set away from becoming the oldest Wimbledon champion of the Open era. But that point, or the form she had up until that period of the match, would never materialize.

Muguruza had won just 23 percent of her games when facing a double break point, and Williams had won 75 percent of her games during a break point opportunity, but back-to-back forehand errors tied the game 40-40. Muguruza would then claim the pivotal game thanks to a forehand winner and another error from the veteran.

"I definitely would have loved to have converted some of those points," Williams said. "But she competed really well so credit to her. She just dug in there and managed to play better."

Suddenly Williams looked every bit her age, and Muguruza, who was just more than a year old when Venus turned pro in 1994, looked like the 23-year-old future star she was predicted to be after she beat Serena Williams to win the French Open last year.

"I was expecting the best Venus because I saw her and she was playing very good," Muguruza said. "I knew she was going to make me suffer and fight for it. When I had those set points against me, I'm like, 'Hey, it's normal. I'm playing Venus here.' So I just kept fighting. I knew that if I was playing like I was playing during the two weeks, I was going to eventually have an opportunity. So I was calm. If I lose the first set, I still have two more. Let's not make drama."

Of course, Muguruza can say that now, but history wouldn't have been on her side had she dropped the first set. In the past 10 Wimbledon women's finals, the winner of the first set has gone on to win the match. The outcome was the same for 40 of the past 43 major women's finals, too. From an individual standpoint, Muguruza was 40-2 in her major career after winning the first set compared to 8-15 when she lost it. Meanwhile, Williams was 6-1 in major finals after winning the first set and just 1-7 in major finals after dropping it.

Williams essentially lost the match when she self-destructed at the end of the first and has only herself to blame when she analyzes her performance. She committed 25 unforced errors overall and hit just 17 winners in the match and was also 0-3 on break point opportunities, while Muguruza was able to break Williams' serve four times.

Muguruza would not only come back to win that 10th game, she also won the set 7-5 and then bageled Williams in the second set 6-0, taking a remarkable nine straight games en route to winning her first Wimbledon title in dominant fashion. She is just the third woman in the Open era to clinch a Wimbledon title with a 6-0 set.

"I just felt good," Muguruza said. "I won the first set. I wanted it to go my way as fast as possible, just not get too complicated. But I know it's hard. I'm happy that it happened. I played very well since the first game, and I kept the level, which is very hard because, you know, you're, like, nervous. You see you're winning. You say, 'Oh, maybe I'll win.' I was just very composed."

It was also the first time Williams had ever dropped a set 6-0 at Wimbledon, and Muguruza, who grew up watching and admiring the Williams sisters, became the first person to beat both Venus and Serena Williams in a Grand Slam final. As much as she loved watching them, the Spaniard simply smiled during her news conference when reminded that she had just routed the sentimental favorite at SW19.

"But," Muguruza said, "we want new names and new faces so, c'mon."

It's hard to argue that tennis doesn't have a new name and new face to remember after the way she closed out Williams on Saturday.