Angelique Kerber targets maiden Wimbledon title

Sport360 staff 20:40 12/07/2018
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Angelique Kerber has her heart set on winning a first Wimbledon title after booking a return to the final.

The German beat Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-3 in their semi-final and is one win away from a third grand slam triumph.

Her previous trophy successes – at the Australian Open and US Open – came in the same glorious 2016 season as her first run to the final at the All England Club.

On that occasion, Kerber was beaten by Serena Williams in a thrilling encounter.

She will now get a rematch with the seven-time champion after Williams beat Julia Goerges in the second semi-final.

The form of two years ago sent Kerber to world number one and she is again playing at a similarly high level after a horror 2017 campaign.

“Wimbledon is a really special place. I think everybody knows this tournament. It would be really special to win,” she said.

“But it’s still a long way off. I know that I have to play my best tennis in the final.

“For sure it’s really special. I know it will be a full house there. The atmosphere will be amazing.

“I’m looking forward to having the feeling again.

“With 2016, all the success, 2017, with a few up and downs, to coming back this year, I think I learned so many things about me.

“The last years, not only 2016 and 2017, also the years before, give me a lot of experience and to know what is really important in life, what’s not, and what you have to focus on.”

Her semi-final was billed as attack versus defence and it was the solid, reliable manner of Kerber that prevailed as she let an erratic Ostapenko, who was going for winners on almost every shot, hand her a swathe of free points.

Ostapenko had an off-day against Kerber in the semi-final.

Ostapenko had an off-day against Kerber in the semi-final.

Ostapenko won the French Open in 2017 by playing in this manner and knows no other way, but she had an off day and, despite hitting 30 winners, it was her 35 unforced errors that cost her any chance of progressing.

In comparison, there were just seven errors off the racket of Kerber and that tells the story of where the match was won.

“She is a player who tries to be aggressive from the first point,” Kerber added.

“For me it was important to be moving well, have patience, and also take my chances when I had the chance to be aggressive myself.”

Having seen her defence of the French Open end at the first hurdle last month, Ostapenko was pleased with her Wimbledon campaign but knows where she has to improve.

“I’m working on my consistency,” she said. “It’s not like I want to hit every ball so hard.

“Sometimes in the match that happens because I really want to hit a winner, I want to win the point.

“But in practice, of course I’m working on longer rallies.”

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