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Rediff.com  » Sports » Serena crushes Zvonareva to win Wimbledon title

Serena crushes Zvonareva to win Wimbledon title

Last updated on: July 03, 2010 21:17 IST

Serena WilliamsSerena Williams again showed the gaping chasm between her and the rest of the field when she retained her Wimbledon singles crown with a crushing 6-3, 6-2 win over Russia's Vera Zvonareva on Saturday.

The victory, her fourth at the All England Club which took just 67 minutes, meant Williams overtook Billie Jean King with 13 Grand Slam singles titles to go sixth in the all-time list.

The 28-year-old celebrated the winning smash by flinging her racket into the air and gesturing to her elated entourage. Zvonareva, who was appearing in a Grand Slam final for the first time, was blinking back the tears by her chair after the defeat.

"This one is very special. Billie Jean, I got you," Serena told her compatriot who was watching on from the Royal Box. "I'd like to congratulate Vera, she has been through so much and she defines what a champion and never giving up means."

From the moment Serena flung down the ceremonial bouquet of flowers on to her chair after warm applause from the Centre Centre crowd greeted her and Zvonareva's entrance it was clear she meant business.

The defending champion opened confidently with a rock-solid service game to love, and the Russian's nerves appeared to settle after levelling at 1-1 on a warm, overcast day at the All England Club.

Zvonareva, only the third Russian to appear in the women's final here, took the American top seed to deuce in game three before Serena clinched it with a third ace.

The first signs of pressure on the 21st seed came in the sixth game when three forehand errors gave Williams the first break point of the match.

But Zvonareva hit a pinpoint forehand into the corner to fend that off, and then a netted return from Williams made it 3-3. The first breakthrough came in game eight when a double fault from Zvonareva took it to deuce before a long backhand from the Russian gave Williams another break point.

The American smacked her racket into the ground in frustration when she netted a backhand return but a superb lob after a lucky netcord gave Williams another chance.

After lashing a winning forehand down the line, she went down on bended knee and celebrated with an almighty fist pump.

Zvonareva took Williams to deuce to offer the supportive crowd hope of a fightback, but Williams clung on and a long forehand gave the world number one the first set after 36 minutes.

The Russian looked unsettled and her tension was clear for all to see, including a host of former champions watching from the Royal Box, when a rushed netted forehand gave Williams a break in the opening game of the second set.

Zvonareva impressively saved two further break points trailing 1-3, but another double fault from the Russian meant a two-break deficit and an impossible mountain to climb.

Another confident service game took Williams to 5-1, and Zvonareva saved some pride with a hold of her own before Williams motored through the final game, smashing an overhead into the back canvas for the moment of victory.

"Congratulations, you're a great player but also a great champion," Zvonareva told her conqueror in an emotional courtside interview. "You showed great determination throughout the week and you deserved to win today."

And the statistics more than backed that up.

The American battered nine aces against the helpless Russian to take her tournament tally to 89 -- sister Venus was second on the list with 30 -- and won an astonishing 94 percent of points on her first serve.

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