Wimbledon: Five things we learned this year at SW19
The general consensus amongst fans (particularly of the British variety) is that this year’s Wimbledon was among the best in recent memory for a number of reasons.
A win on home soil from Andy Murray in front of a jubilant and remarkably noisy crowd and shocks galore in both the men’s and women’s singles created plenty of excitement to keep us on the edges of our seats.
Murray’s straight-sets victory in the final ended so much pain for tennis fans in this country – 77 years of it, in fact. It also confirmed what we all knew about him – he is a genuine world-class talent.
This year’s event will be remembered for ages by fans that expected to see the top seeds in Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams coast to victory in their respective tournaments but got more than a few surprises.
British fans in particular will receive encouragement from what they saw over the past few days and not just because of the performances of Murray.
Fellow Brit Laura Robson, at the tender age of 19, performed admirably too, reaching the fourth round before a spirited defeat.
Now that the dust has settled on another thrilling tournament in SW19, here are five things that we learned from Wimbledon this year:
Andy Murray has more Grand Slam victories in him
A straight-sets defeat of Novak Djokovic in the final showed that the determined Scot fully justifies his 2nd place in the world rankings. He could yet rise further.
Next month, he begins his defence of the US Open title he won last year and will be strongly fancied to retain it and add more major honours to his trophy cabinet. Wimbledon proved that the US Open wasn’t just a one-off.
The end may be nigh for Roger Federer
After his surprising defeat in the second round to the unheralded Sergiy Stakhovsky, some wonder whether the Swiss legend can maintain his position as one of the men to beat in the sport.
He has dropped to 5th in the rankings and may end up facing a Murray, Djokovic or Nadal in the last eight of future Grand Slams. Moreover, he’s not getting any younger at 31.
Women’s tennis is full of surprises
The women’s game is extremely hard to predict, but hardly anyone would have expected to see a final between Marion Bartoli and Sabine Lisicki.
Both thoroughly deserved to reach the final and showed that there is a huge amount of depth in the women’s game. Also, who would have guessed that Serena Williams would have lost in the last 16, to Lisicki no less?
Laura Robson really does have a bright future
Even though the teenager lost in the fourth round, Robson was arguably the star performer as far as Brits in the women’s singles event were concerned, taking out the 10th seed Maria Kirilenko.
By way of consolation, Robson is now ranked 27th in the world and looks set to rise higher if she keeps improving. She might even reduce the burden on Murray to perform at next year’s Wimbledon…
Poland could be a new tennis hotbed
For the first time in tennis history, a Pole, Jerzy Janowicz, reached the semi-finals of a Grand Slam. Janowicz showed that he has the game to break into the top 10 in the rankings at SW19.
In the quarter-finals, he saw off compatriot Lukasz Kubot in a game that might see more youngsters take up the sport in the hope of emulating Janowicz’s success to date.