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Wimbledon 2010: Williams v Zvonareva as it happened

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By Caroline Cheese
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

1542: There's Serena counting the number of times 'Williams' appears on the roll of honour board. They have won the title nine times since 2000: Venus with five, Serena with four. Not even Roger Federer can match that sort of dominance. Speaking of Federer, he'll be back tomor... Ah wait... Can Tomas Berdych succeed where Vera Zvonareva failed when he takes on favourite Rafa Nadal in the men's final? Join us tomorrow to find out, why don't you?

1537: And they're off. One hour and seven minutes work and Serena walks off with a £1m cheque. Let's not get into that argument though. I shall only show myself up as an utter failure of a feminist. And you can't blame Williams for being so much better than anyone else. She served 89 aces in the tournament, putting her level with Andy Murray, who is sixth on the men's list. Phenomenal.

1532: "Everyone's dream can come true if you stick to it and work hard, so thanks." No, thank you, Serena. And with that, Serena's off to have her picture taken with the trophy. She overtakes Billie Jean King on the all-time list and is up to sixth with 13 Grand Slam titles. She'll need another five Grand Slams to catch Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova.

Serena Williams: "Hey Billie [Jean King], I got you, it's number 13 for me. It's amazing to be among such great people. Vera has been though so much and everyone should give her a big cheer - she really defines what a champion and never giving up means."

Vera Zvonareva: "Serena congratulations, you're a great player, but you're also a great champion. You showed great effort and determination throughout the week and you really deserved to win today. I'm a little bit disappointed at the moment I was not able to show my best today. Serena just didn't allow me to. She was playing really well. After a couple of hours I will look back and realise... I was dreaming about this, playing on Centre Court in the final at Wimbledon, since I was a little kid.... now, here I am. It means a lot: those people in my box were here for me today, also the surgeon who did my surgery last year, because of him I was able to be here today. I was doubting I would be able to play tennis again."

1523: Sympathetic cheers for Vera Zvonareva as she collects the runners-up plate... Williams performs a sort-of half curtsey for the Duke of Kent as she gets her hands on the Venus Rosewater Dish again.

1521: Serena Williams did not face a single break point in that match, and she hardly seemed to break sweat. A brutal display from the world number one.

1520: SERENA WILLIAMS WINS 2010 WIMBLEDON TITLE

Williams 6-3 6-2 Zvonareva
A 122mph ace down the 'T' to start the game, second serve kicks like a mule and Williams is quickly into a 30-0 lead. Her all-round game is just so far ahead of her rivals. Williams dances back and bangs down a smash to bring up three match points and here's another smash to put away... She's done it! The racquet flies in the air as Williams celebrates her fourth Wimbledon title.

Williams *6-3 5-2 Zvonareva
Still the crowd try to will Zvonareva on and the Russian responds with a quick-ish hold of serve. I imagine Williams will be quite happy to show off that serve once more before she leaves Centre Court with the trophy again.

Williams 6-3 5-1* Zvonareva
Well, I know this is a bit of a disappointing final - but only because Williams is so far ahead of her rivals. She's unstoppable at the moment, and Zvonareva doesn't appear to have any answers.

Williams *6-3 4-1 Zvonareva
Zvonareva in control of the rally... but her backhand clatters the net. She swivels 360 degrees in frustration. Williams using the full width of the court with an awesome forehand and she has two break points. Return into the net - and now a mighty forehand into the corner. Not even Williams is getting that. The crowd respond, shrieking their approval. But two rushed errors put her in trouble again - and this time, she double-faults to go two breaks down. The Russian responds by belting a ball up the other end... Williams is two games away from her fourth Wimbledon title.

Williams 6-3 3-1* Zvonareva
Not for the first time, Zvonareva sends a loopy ball onto the baseline and Williams, faced with a high backhand, nets it. Moonballing is the way to go. It worked for Conchita Martinez... Williams holds to 15 though.

Williams *6-3 2-1 Zvonareva
Zvonareva could do with a quick service game - and she gets it. As a final Williams return balloons over the baseline, the Russian shoots a determined look at her support camp, strides back to the chair and covers her head in a towel. That's a deliberate tactic to try to maintain her focus - but it makes her look a bit like ET.

Williams 6-3 2-0* Zvonareva
Serena is winning 95% of the points behind her first serve, which is going in 66% of the time. She's also starting to look impregnable from the back of the court. Not good news for poor Vera. Williams looks pretty disgusted when Hawkeye decrees her serve is out. Never mind, just welly down a second serve and put away a probably-not-as-easy-as-she-made-it-look volley eh?

Williams *6-3 1-0 Zvonareva
Another big game for Zvonareva, as she looks to put that set behind her. The first serve has deserted her though, and a backhand into the net leaves her facing a break point. Here's a forehand to put away - slapped into the net... Uh-oh.

Williams 6-3 0-0* Zvonareva
"Come on Vera," comes the shout as Williams double-faults on her first set point, and now a backhand from Williams goes wide. Back to deuce. The top seed brings out a big first serve before carefully putting away a smash, and there's no coming back this time, the Russian missing a backhand after 36 minutes to give Williams the first set. Not a bad effort by Zvonareva, but not good enough I'm afraid.

Williams *5-3 Zvonareva
Zvonareva goes a bit French Open on us as she slides along the baseline to scramble back a backhand. Williams is rattled and nets her response. Zvonareva has two game points, but Williams turns up the power and a double fault gives her a break point. Second serve for Williams - but she nets the return. Wasteful... but that's brilliant. A topspin backhand lob to bring up a second break point and now the American is down on one knee to celebrate a fabulous, running forehand pass. It was a decent, deep volley by Zvonareva, which would have beaten most players - but not the world number one. She'll serve for the set.

Williams 4-3* Zvonareva
A small, white butterfly among those enjoying the action. Actually not sure it's enjoying the action. Hard to see from here. Zvonareva fizzes a backhand down the line, but wide, and Williams holds to 15. Big game coming up for the Russian as set one reaches crunch time.

Williams *3-3 Zvonareva
First sign of trouble for Zvonareva at 0-30, but Williams lets her off the hook with a forehand into the net, before the Russian sweeps a lovely forehand down the line. But now one goes wide and Williams has the first break point. Yelp of delight from Zvonareva as she puts away a short ball to save it. Impressive - and there's no doubt who the crowd are backing.

Williams 3-2* Zvonareva
Another double fault from Williams - and another ace. Zvonareva finally gets to hit a ball in the next point, but gets a forehand all wrong. Dame Shirley Bassey is looking on from the Royal Box. "A Williams in the Wimbledon final? It's all just a little bit of history repeating," she did not say earlier.

Williams *2-2 Zvonareva
A look of shock and a shake of the head from Williams as she gets a second serve to look at, but wallops her return miles wide. A first ace for Zvonareva follows. You've got to think the Russian's first serve will be crucial today, and so far it's holding up just fine. In other news, German fifth seeds Peter Heller and Kevin Krawietz level their boys' doubles semi-final with Britain's Lewis Burton and George Morgan at a set apiece.

Williams 2-1* Zvonareva
Williams admitted she was worried pressure might be an issue in this final - and a double fault at 15-15 would appear to attest that out. Well it would, if she hadn't followed it with a crunching ace. But what's this? A wild backhand over the line and we're back to deuce. Ace to close the game though.

Williams *1-1 Zvonareva
Near-riotous cheering greets Zvonareva's first point of the match. They're itching for at least a close match here - and there are encouraging signs as Zvon calmly puts away a volley to move to 30-0, and she's soon 40-0 to the good. Lovely, angled forehand from Williams gets her on the board before Zvonareva overcooks one - but Williams nets. Solid start by the underdog.

Williams 1-0* Zvonareva
Make that 81 aces for the tournament. Only one rally in the game and Williams wins it with a brutal backhand down the line.
* denotes next to serve

1412: Serena, looking to add to her 80 aces, will serve first...

1410: Centre Court looking absolutely glorious as I look down. If you think the baselines are looking a bit brown and bare, you should see Henman Hill. The picnicking masses have left it almost completely brown. Zvonareva has stuck with her routine of warming up in tracksuit bottoms, despite the bright sunshine. They're coming off now though...

1404: Hana, her hair tied in some very smart bunches on her big day, does a magnificent job of tossing the coin. I was so nervous for her, I quite forgot to see who won it. We'll find out shortly.

1401: Nine-year-old Hana Pearce will toss the coin today. Hana won a competition in which contestants had to explain why they should be chosen. "I really like tennis," wrote Hana. "I play it on the street outside my house because it's difficult to get any courts. I can toss a coin really well and don't get nervous!" Her dad texted us earlier on in the tournament, and I imagine he'll be brimming with pride as Hana waits at the net for Serena and Vera. Here they are now in fact...

1356: A smattering of applause as the linespeople march onto Centre Court, joining the ball boys and girls. Just a couple of things missing now... "Vera needs to get off to a good start, but I just don't if that's going to be possible for her," John McEnroe tells BBC Two, recalling his nerves in his first Grand Slam final.

1352: "Serena is the best," a lad confidently informed his mum as I made my way to Commentary Box 4. Yep, world number one, 12-time Grand Slam winner, yet to drop a set, 80 aces... it's hard to argue with the young scamp. (Manually refresh would you? Thanks!)

By Piers Newbery
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

1349: You know something important is about to happen when I get booted into touch, although this time it coincides with news of free orange squash in the press room, so I will hand you over to Caroline Cheese for the penultimate time - ever - to take you through the ladies' singles final.

It's good news for a Briton
1341: You thought British interest was over for another year at Wimbledon? You were mistaken. Lewis Burton & George Morgan have just got under way in the first boys' doubles semi-final (against some Germans) on Court Five, with Liam Broady & Tom Farquharson to follow in the second (against some Russians). Defeat is simply not an option.

Twitter
5 live's Jonathan Overend on Twitter: "Hilarious. Up on the roof with Hingis and Kournikova, live on 5live right now. IBM teenage boys taking a coincidental break... suffice to say they are all trying to look cool and failing."

1334: A few basics for you - Serena Williams has beaten Vera Zvonareva in five of their six meetings, but they haven't played each over for over two years. Zvonareva's only win came on hard courts in Cincinnati four years ago and she is appearing in her first Grand Slam final, compared to Serena's 16th. Victory today will take the American past Billie Jean King into sixth place in the all-time list with 13 Grand Slam singles titles.

Virginia Wade
1324: "I've always thought Vera's one of the most instinctive players off the ground but her serve is a bit of an issue," says Virginia Wade. "I've always thought in that situation you've got to let the other player win their serve and you concentrate on winning yours. She's finally come of age, maybe the fact she's had some injuries has kept her fresh, and maybe beating the Williams sisters in the doubles could help her this afternoon."

Lindsay Davenport
1320: Following that important security announcement, which was only made because of the clear afterthought in brackets, we can look forward to this afternoon's big match. Former champions Virginia Wade and Lindsay Davenport are out on Centre Court now. "Zvonareva's earned her place here," says Davenport. "It's obviously a tough match-up for her with Serena, who's only lost serve three times in the tournament. Vera's got to hang in there and not let Serena build up a lead too early. Vera hits her groundstrokes so well and redirects pace, but she doesn't want to get pushed back too far behind the baseline. And when she sees a second serve, she has to take advantage."

Text in your views on 81111
From Pavlos on gate 1 via text: "Please say hi to cheesey, i was the security guard who scanned her in this morning :) absolute legend (as are you piers)."

Bjorn Borg
1310: Bjorn Borg is asked on BBC News 24 whether Andy Murray can ever win Wimbledon: "Absolutely, Andy's been in two Grand Slam finals and in the match against Nadal I thought Andy played well, but Nadal played his best match of the tournament. Andy has everything in his game and he's going to win a Grand Slam tournament. I would not be surpsirsed if he becomes world number one. He's working hard, he doesn't have any real weaknesses, so he just has to keep going."

1302: For anyone worried that Tomas Berdych might have thought, "Stuff practice, it's only Rafa, I'm staying in bed," I can allay those fears by telling you that he's on Court 11. From this distance it looks lke he's practising with Mansour Bahrami, but I doubt it. He hasn't laughed once.

1258: Out on Court 17, Rafael Nadal is thumping forehands at some other poor soul - can't quite make out who today's lucky victim is but we're on the case. I do recognise Uncle Toni, who stands on the baseline presumably telling Rafa to keep doing whatever it is he's doing. And a quick manual refresh should bring actual moving pictures to the top of your page, if you're in the UK. If not, you should be outside doing something cultural anyway.

Andy Murray
1252: Alex Kay in the Daily Mail has painstakingly deconstructed Nadal's win, saying: "Obviously, Murray was not outclassed by Nadal - but the Spaniard found his best tennis when it mattered most." And Martin Samuel in the same paper captures the mood of many by suggesting there was not much the Briton could have done, saying: "It must be a desperate feeling to know your best is not good enough and Murray was confronted with that grim reality on more than one occasion on Friday."

1245: The ladies' singles final will get under way at 1400 BST, and you are clearly already in the best position to follow it. TV coverage starts on BBC One and HD at 1300 BST, before flicking over to BBC Two at 1435 BST, while 5 live gets going from Centre Court at 1335 BST. Stay right where you are for live video streaming (UK only) and some Caroline Cheese text chat when play begins.

1240: Chapter Two of the press round-up, and Simon Briggs in the Telegraph draws a parallel between Murray and Stevie G, Lamps, JT et al: "While the vicissitudes of Britain's sporting summer may be demoralising for the general public, the travel agents must enjoy it. At this rate, the whole of Britain's sporting elite will soon be clogging up the beaches of Sardinia."

Twitter
5 live's Jonathan Overend on Twitter: "Totally drained today, energy sapped by the fine margins which split sporting winners from losers. so so close. not far away. Onwards... "

Latest scores
1227: A quick glance at Court 11 tells me that Vera Zvonareva is also practising at the moment, and is currently doing a lot of volleying. There is also action on Court 12, where Dutchmen Jacob Eltingh & Paul Haarhuis attempt to bring more sporting glory to their nation against Goran Ivanisevic & Cedric Pioline. And on Court 14, the wheelchair doubles continues with Stephane Houdet & Shingo Kunieda bidding to add the Wimbledon title to their wins at the Australian Open and Roland Garros earlier this year. Houdet is the world doubles number one and singles number two, and Kunieda is the world singles number one and doubles number two. Neat.

Andy Murray
1219: As I promised/warned, we'll be picking through the bones of yesterday's second men's semi-final, which saw Rafael Nadal demonstrate exactly why he's already an all-time great, and exactly what Andy Murray will have to do to win a Grand Slam title. The Sun can't leave England's footballers alone with the headline, "Now you know how we felt all week Andy....", and Charlie Wyett adds, "There will be those in the 'Anyone But Murray' camp who will have been delighted with this match, believing the Scot is going down the same path as Tim Henman who lost four SW19 semis and failed to win a Grand Slam. Yet Murray, having reached two Slam finals, remains agonisingly close."

Twitter
Lindsay Davenport on Twitter: "Wimbledon finals day. When you are not competing, you get a much better sense of the occasion and the glory that is Wimbledon."

Serena Williams
1214: Smith is teaming up with fellow Brit Anne Hobbs to take on Czech/Hungarian duo Helena Sukova & Andrea Temesvari, and after both pairs lost their opening two matches, this one is all about Group A pride. Meanwhile, Serena Williams is practising in front of a predictably large crowd on Court 16.

1210: There's already all sorts going on around the grounds, and what's this on Court 18? Is it Rafa in those piratas and the headband? No, it's Britain's very own Sam Smith preparing for her Invitational Doubles by knocking up with a ball boy. The young fellow is tiny and looks very nervous. "Dodgy backhand," says my evil sidekick Caroline Cheese. "He needs to work on that."

Twitter
Brad Gilbert on Twitter: "SW is playing to good at the moment, been a great run by Vera it ends hard today over under 6 games for Vera, doubles she can win for sure."

The sun is out
1204: The Voice of Wimbledon predicts "a warm, dry day ahead at 26C - we could see a little more cloud but it's worth having plenty of sunblock, water and some head protection." Good old VoW, I hope he gets to see a British Wimbledon winner one day, even his memory of 1936 must be starting to fade.

1200: Good afternoon, and welcome to a bright and sunny finals weekend at Wimbledon. With fixed grins in place and memories erased, we look forwards, onwards, upwards.... OK, we might look backwards for a bit at yesterday's events but today is really all about Serena Williams v Vera Zvonareva in the ladies' singles final.



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see also
Wimbledon - day 12 photos
05 Jul 10 |  Tennis
Murray hurt by Wimbledon defeat
02 Jul 10 |  Tennis
Serena seals fourth Wimbledon win
03 Jul 10 |  Tennis
Wimbledon day 11 as it happened
02 Jul 10 |  Tennis
Serena battles through to final
01 Jul 10 |  Tennis
Zvonareva reaches Wimbledon final
01 Jul 10 |  Tennis
Order of play
23 May 09 |  Tennis
Women's singles latest
21 May 10 |  Live scores
Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis
Women's singles draw
28 Jan 10 |  Tennis


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