Advantage Miss Serena Williams.
Serena made short work Saturday of older sister Venus in the fourth all-Williams Wimbledon final. The 7-6, 6-2 victory gave her third crown at the Big W, all at her sibling’s hand. The match also gave Lil’ Sis an 11-10 edge over Big Sis in head-to-head matchups.
It was a match that lacked drama, as Serena, who has the bigger all-around game, steadily raised her level, while Venus’ declined Her serve bothered by the wind, Venus was eclipsed, as Serena lost under 10 points on hers throughout the match, which lacked the drama and passion of the 2008 final that went to the older sister.
Regrettably, there were few rallies like the one in which Serena set up her second match point. Indeed, the match played like the men’s game of yore before the All-England Club slowed the grass and the balls. Serve, return, winner was the pattern of much of the day.
(Let’s hope tomorrow’s “Breakfast at Wimbledon” between Andy Roddick and Roger Federer, in which the Swiss maestro attempts to push past Pete Sampras as the most decorated Slam holder on the men’s side, will leave a better taste for viewers and NBC. Roddick’s American roots notwithstanding, can’t imagine the Nielsens will measure up to last year’s epic between Federer and nemesis Rafa Nadal that ended Roger’s run to break Bjorn Borg’s mark of five consecutive of Wimbledon titles.)
Thus, the younger sister — whom many, including this observer, believe could have risen to the ranks of Court, Graf and Navratilova in terms of the most single major crowns on the ladies side had she not squandered years through injuries and assorted distractions and disinterest — now has 11 Grand Slams. She holds the current trophies for all, save for Roland Garros
Venus, whom I always admired for even keel and sportsmanship — Serena, it seems, can rarely bring herself to admit defeat even when she’s been outplayed — still has eight single Slams on her mantle.
Next up: the sisters, who are best friends, must put aside their emotions and play for the doubles crown. You have to figure that one’s coming home to America, too.