Breaking down the Wimbledon finals

Breaking down the Wimbledon finals

Published Sep. 16, 2009 10:36 p.m. ET

The final weekend at Wimbledon has brought tennis fans a pair of compelling championship matches.

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The Williams sisters — the most accomplished siblings in the history of the sport — will meet once again in a Grand Slam final with the ladies' title on the line. In the men's final, Roger Federer is looking to make history against Andy Roddick. The Swiss star has a chance to win a record-setting 15th Grand Slam singles title, solidifying his standing as the greatest player in the history of men's tennis.

There is not much to separate Serena and Venus Williams on the court. The sisters have split the 20 matches they've played on the WTA Tour. Serena prevailed in their last meeting in Miami, but Venus was victorious in the previous match this year in Dubai.

The Williams sisters have faced each other seven times in the final of a major tournament, with Serena owning a 5-2 head-to-head edge. Venus defeated her younger sister in straight sets in last year's singles final at the All England Club and is poised to become the first woman since Steffi Graf to win Wimbledon in three consecutive years.

The Williams sisters advanced to the singles final in strikingly different fashions. Venus was thoroughly dominant in destroying top-seeded Dinara Safina in the semifinals. She has now won 34 consecutive sets at Wimbledon, using her first serve as a significant weapon. Venus won 80 percent of the points on her first serve against Safina and will need a similar total if she is going to beat her sister in London.

Serena revealed her tenacity in her dramatic semifinal win over Elena Dementieva. In the longest Wimbledon women's semifinal in the Open era, Williams saved a match point and used her power to dictate the majority of the critical rallies.

Serena, however, won't be able to physically push her sister around in the singles final. This match should feature some incredible battles from the back of the court. While Serena may have a slightly stronger serve, Venus has been playing with more consistency during the fortnight in London. Venus' forehand has been dialed in throughout the tournament and it could be the deciding factor in this match.

When the Williams sisters played for the title last year, Serena jumped out to a 4-2 lead in the opening set. But Venus rallied to post a 7-5, 6-4 victory for her fifth Wimbledon crown, using that forehand to her advantage.

Venus has so much momentum that it's difficult to pick against her this year in the English capital. While Safina donated several points with her shaky play in their semifinal match, Williams demonstrated the full array of her talents in the lopsided victory.


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