Serena Williams reaches Wimbledon final to continue fairytale comeback

Evonne Goolagong lifted the trophy in 1980, three years after having her first child.


Serena Williams is not focused on simply matching and breaking Margaret Court’s all-time Grand Slam record – she wants to smash it.

The 36-year-old’s pregnancy ended with an extremely hard delivery that left her needing several operations to prevent life-threatening blood clots.

Williams had daughter Olympian on September 1, followed by a pulmonary embolism and being bedridden for six weeks.

“It’s no secret I had a super tough delivery”.

Continuing her imperious march, Serena Williams blew away Germany’s Julia Goerges 6-2, 6-4.

“Because of all the blood issues I have, It was really touch-and-go for a minute”.

Despite making 18 first-set winners compared to only six from Kerber, the 21-year-old also made 19 unforced errors, with Kerber only making two.

“Because I have Olympia. I’m taking everything as it is and just enjoying every moment”.

An eighth Wimbledon title would also move her past Steffi Graf into second place on the list of female Wimbledon champions, behind nine-time victor Martina Navratilova. Kerber needs to mix up her shots, giving Serena different pace and make her run the length of the court.

Saturday’s final will be a re-match of the 2016 showpiece, which Williams won.

At 181st in the world, Williams is technically the lowest ranked player to reach the women’s final – although given her stellar record, it’s a statistic that is unlikely to carry much weight. Williams won that for a second consecutive title at the All England Club, then sat out the grass-court tournament a year ago while pregnant, part of a 16-month gap between majors.

Williams would not disagree – she said she felt like a “superhero” wearing a black catsuit at the French Open, while the flesh-coloured tights she is wearing here would meet a comic-book heroine’s approval.

“It’s not inevitable for me to be playing like this”, Williams said.

“It’s very impressive. I haven’t even been to the gym, let alone played tennis”.

Though Serena has played unbelievably well so far, she hasn’t faced a player like Kerber yet.

Williams’ movement is far from the best on tour but her game is so well oiled that it does not matter, her ability to control proceedings ensuring she was always perfectly placed to unleash another groundstroke.

The former world No.1 was open about her struggles post-birth and how the hardhships she’s had to face make the achievement of just qualifying for the final even more satisfying. “That’s what I’m doing”, Serena said. I want to get as many as I can, starting with – I still have a match to win, so I’m not even there yet’. After Kerber had her serve broken in the second set, Ostapenko powered back to take another game, but Kerber was able to complete the sweep when Ostapenko fired two serves back into the net and returned the final volley outside the lines on match point.

Of course, Serena Williams exacted her revenge at Wimbledon that same year, when she defeated Kerber in the final.


Wimbledon continues Friday with the men’s semifinals: Rafael Nadal playing Novak Djokovic for a 52nd time, most between two men in the Open Era (Djokovic leads 26-25), and American John Isner against South African Kevin Anderson in a match of first-time Wimbledon semifinalists.

Germany's Angelique Kerber celebrates defeating Latvia's Jelena Ostapenko during their women's singles semi-finals match at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Thursday