Serena Williams issues defiant statement of intent over Margaret Court record

Doug Mendoza
July 12, 2018

I didn't expect to do this well in my fourth tournament back after 16 months away. I just feel like when I don't have anything to lose, I can just play so free. That's what I'm doing.

The victory over Goerges extended Williams' winning streak at Wimbledon to 20 matches, dating to the start of the 2015 edition.

That's not the case.

Her 35th Grand Slam semi quickly raced to a conclusion as Williams stepped on the gas, Goerges trying to mix things up but failing in her execution.

That enjoyment was clear to see as she dashed Goerges's hopes of setting up an all-German final with Angelique Kerber in 70 unforgiving minutes. It should come as no surprise, then, that she lost 6-3, 6-3 to Kerber.

Remarkably, the 36-year-old was back in a Grand Slam final just 10 months after giving birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia.

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The 11th-seeded Kerber is seeking a return to the Wimbledon final and a possible rematch with Serena Williams, who beat the German in the 2016 final. At 36 years and 291 days, the sixth-oldest Grand Slam semifinalist in the Open Era dominated 62 64 Julia Goerges and became the third oldest major finalist.

The Duchess of Sussex will cheer on Serena Williams who has reached her 10th Wimbledon women's singles final - just ten months after almost dying during childbirth.

There were no drawn-out points in the early going, no lengthy baseline exchanges, essentially because Ostapenko wouldn't allow it. That first game consisted of eight points: Three were unforced errors by Ostapenko, including a double-fault to begin the proceedings; the other five were winners by her, including a 100 miles per hour ace to close the hold. Especially at Wimbledon, where she's one victory from an eighth championship. Williams won that for a second consecutive title at the All England Club, then sat out the grass-court tournament previous year while pregnant, part of a 16-month gap between majors.

"This is not inevitable for me", she said.

Eventually, Kerber's style ruled the day. On the way to the last-four, she's dropped one set - against Camila Giorgi - in the quarterfinal. Ostapenko's strokes were missing and she grew increasingly frustrated, slapping a thigh after a miss or leaning forward and putting her hands on her knees after others. Her first Grand Slam tournament back was the French Open, where she won three matches before withdrawing last month because of an injured chest muscle.

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