So, it’s final!
The last men and women standing at Wimbledon are Serena and Vera, Tomas and Rafael.
Eleven days of tennis and the draw has whittled down to these four contenders for the throne at the green lawns at SW18.
Could it have gotten any better than this?
Of course, we will miss Federer and his balletic grace on the tennis court. We have grown so used to having his majestic presence adorn Wimbledon that his absence seems like blasphemy.
But if it is blasphemy, then what do we make of the stronger, fitter, and wiser Nadal, whose game, presence, and speed makes us forget, at least for a while, that Federer was God?
Quote of the day:
This Spanish bull, now in his prime, with his pomp and splendor, sometimes makes us wish that he had a matador to tame him. But this raging bull has no opponent who could cut him down.
And beating Nadal will take a matador’s skills; not just one cut, but multiple cuts that slow, weaken, and bleed him until he is too tired to run, to slide, to vie.
Can Tomas Berdych, who has burst through the ranks much like Soderling last year, knock out the 2008 champion? I wonder.
Nadal is unlikely to look a gift horse in the mouth. And Wimbledon, without Federer, is just that! Get ready to crown Nadal king of Wimbledon once more! He is no pretender!
Can he be the next emperor? Seven Grand Slam titles and still counting. Only the US Open eludes his grasp.
Comparisons to Borg will appear odious once he wins this title. Can Nadal do an Agassi and perhaps surpass him?
Serena has been sublime this year on the way to the final. Her 13th title seems a mere formality.
Can Vera Zvonareva knock the stuffing out of this peahen? That will take some doing!
But this might be Vera’s best chance because she has displayed immense self-belief and confidence to get this far. Can she cross the final barrier?
It is Vera’s first-ever Grand Slam final. Will the occasion overwhelm her? She can draw inspiration from the young Sharapova, who demonstrated no such nerves on her maiden Grand Slam final appearance and after demolishing Serena, cool as a cucumber, answered her cell phone on centre court.
The Russians have gone full tilt at the pinnacle of women’s tennis. But the returns, in terms of Grand Slam titles, are still to show.
Sure, there has been a Kuznetsova, a Sharapova, and even a Myskina, but for most part it’s been the pair of Williams and the Belgians, Clijsters and Henin, standing in their way.
Will this showcase a turnaround in Russian fortunes? The talent exists and just needs to be translated into Grand Slam fortune.
Who knows? But for now, let’s just sit back and enjoy some mouthwatering, scrumptious tennis!