Simona Halep and Novak Djokovic were the big winners at Wimbledon.
Halep stunned Serena Williams in the women’s final before Djokovic beat Roger Federer in the men’s showpiece 24 hours later, while Andy Murray continued to build up his fitness in the doubles.
Here, PA takes a look at what we learned from the 2019 Championships.
A five-set thriller!July 1, 2019
Alexander Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas were supposed to finally offer a challenge to the domination of the big three, Djokovic, Federer and Rafael Nadal. But the so-called next generation had been knocked out before Federer and Nadal had even dusted off their rackets. Zverev, 22, crashed out against Czech qualifier Jiri Vesely and 20-year-old Tsitsipas was beaten by world number 89 Thomas Fabbiano, both on day one. A changing of the guard does not appear imminent at all.
The break-out star of the fortnight instead came from the women’s draw as 15-year-old Cori ‘Coco’ Gauff burst into the British sporting consciousness. Gauff’s victory over her idol, Venus Williams, followed by wins against Magdalena Rybarikova and Polona Hercog captivated SW19 and even brought her to the attention of the likes of Michelle Obama and Beyonce’s mother Tina. Gauff was eventually knocked out in the last 16 by eventual winner Halep, but proved she is surely a grand slam champion of the future. And possibly the not-to-distant future, although she does have exams to finish first.
Nick Kyrgios’ antics prompt disapproval and delight in equal measure. The volatile Australian remains supremely gifted but infuriatingly unwilling to put in the hours required to reach the top. He even spent the evening before his second-round match against Nadal – the man he described as “super salty” – in a local pub. Yet, as the 24-year-old said himself about those who dislike his behaviour: “They’re probably still going to be there watching.” And his four-set defeat by the Spaniard was indeed the match of the first week, and one of the best of the tournament.
Johanna Konta threatened to repeat her run to the semi-finals two years ago, only to come unstuck against unheralded Barbora Strycova in the last eight. She may have bristled at the line of questioning she faced afterwards, but the fact remains the British number one had let another big chance to make a first grand slam final slip through her fingers, just as she had at the French Open in May. Konta certainly has the game, but the mental toughness still seems to elude her in the big moments.
Williams must wait a little longer to hit the magic 24 grand slam singles mark and move level with record-holder Margaret Court. The 37-year-old American, short of matches due to injury which saw her form a superstar pairing with Murray in the mixed doubles, still roared into the final and had been improving in every match. But she did not meet anyone of Halep’s class until the final, and the Romanian proved a popular and deserved first-time winner. Williams moves onto the US Open still one short of equalling the record.
- Press Association