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Last Updated: Saturday, 8 July 2006, 17:18 GMT 18:18 UK
Mauresmo delight at 'special' win
By Piers Newbery
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Amelie Mauresmo
Mauresmo had fallen in the semis in her last three Wimbledons
Amelie Mauresmo was stunned by her victory over Justine Henin-Hardenne in the Wimbledon final on Saturday.

The Frenchwoman won 2-6 6-3 6-4 to claim her first Wimbledon and second Grand Slam crown following victory at the Australian Open in January.

"I still can't believe it," she said. "I didn't really expect it coming here but all of a sudden it came together.

"It's the most prestigious tournament in the world and it really is a special moment for me."

Mauresmo, 27, has had to battle with nerves in big matches throughout her career and was especially happy after losing in three previous Wimbledon semi-finals.

"There were some tough moments but I always thought I could make it, and the people around me also, and today it helped me a lot," she said.

"She was playing great in the first set and I was not feeling so good, missing quite a few volleys.

I wanted so much to win here but it doesn't happen this year so I'll come back

Justine Henin-Hardenne

"Then I was really able to pump myself up right from the beginning of the second set and it was a totally different match.

"I was a little bit nervous on the match point, which is probably understandable, but I was really focusing on the game, on what I had to do."

Henin-Hardenne admitted she had been below par after a month that had seen her win at the French Open and Eastbourne, and reach the Wimbledon final.


"Today I wasn't playing my best tennis, far from that," she said. "I wasn't maybe fresh enough to win this match and she has been more solid than me.

"It's a bit hard to lose in the final here for sure but I have to keep what went pretty well in the last few weeks.

"I played a lot so now I will need a little bit of a break."

Henin-Hardenne said she had not been surprised at the confident way in which Mauresmo served out for the title.

"I think her victory last year at the (WTA) Championships and in Melbourne gave her a lot of confidence," she said.

"It's true that she never came down on her serve - she was serving great, a lot of first serves and that's probably been the biggest difference between us today.

"I wanted so much to win here but it doesn't happen this year so I'll come back."



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