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Halep defeats Serena Williams in Wimbledon final

Halep defeats Serena Williams in Wimbledon final

Simona Halep wasn’t focused on trying to stop Serena Williams from winning her 24th Grand Slam title. All that mattered to him was winning Wimbledon for the first time.

Virtually perfect from start to finish, Haleo beat Williams 6-2, 6-2 in impressive fashion in the final at the All England Club.

And the match lasted less than an hour.

Halep made just three unforced errors, an incredibly low total and fewer than Williams.

It was the third consecutive Grand Slam final lost by Williams in his efforts to equal Magaret Court with 24 major trophies, the most in tennis history. Williams lost to Angelique Kerber at Wimbledon a year ago and to Naomi Osaka at the US Open in September.

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The 37-year-old American has not won a tournament since the 2017 Australian Open, when she set a mark for the professional era with her 23rd Grand Slam title (Court won 13 of her own against amateur competitors). Williams was pregnant when she won Australia and then took more than a year off the tour. Their daughter, Olympia, was born in September 2017.

Since returning to tennis, Williams has dealt with injuries, but has managed to stay among the elite.

It didn’t take long on Saturday for Halep to show that it wasn’t going to be an easy day for Williams.

Showcasing the talents and characteristics that elevated her to world No. 1 and four previous Grand Slam finals _ but only one major title prior, last year at Roland Garros _ Halep got off to an impossibly perfect start.

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It hit all the balls, as always. But he didn’t merely play defense, managing to land an apparent decisive blow from Williams and returning a winner.

His returns were exceptional, repeatedly returning serves that left Williams’ racket at 115 or more miles per hour. That was a key aspect of the match, as Halep came in having won 53% of his opponents’ service games and Williams came in with 45 aces.

This cool afternoon Halep started off with a pair of service breakers and even had the first ace of the match, putting her in front in just 11 minutes.

Halep won 14 of the first 18 points. He had eight winners without a single error and did not force avoiding a failure until the seventh game.

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Williams, by contrast, looked a bit tense early on, racking up nine unforced errors before landing just one winner. All this before a player on her best day. AP

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