Sharapova, Kvitova Advance to Wimbledon Final

by Staff | June 30th, 2011, 4:30 pm

Former champion Maria Sharapova and last year’s semifinalist Petra Kvitova will square off for the Wimbledon title on Saturday after both stately blondes dismissed similar stately blondes in the Thursday semifinals.
Sharapova after immediately going down a break in the first set rallied to beat German wildcard Sabine Lisicki 6-4, 6-3. The German’s serve never came online, and Sharapova prevailed despite serving problems of her own and double-digit double faults. Lisicki was a point from a 4-0 lead before Sharapova applied her will in the first set on the All England Club’s Center Court.

“I’m thrilled to be in the final,” Sharapova said in her post-match news conference. “I was pretty realistic. I hadn’t been past the fourth round in a few years. So to be at this stage, I’m just thrilled to have the opportunity to go for it.”

The 24-year-old Sharapova is 3-1 in Grand Slam finals, winning Wimbledon in 2004, the US Open in 2006 and the Australian Open in 2008.

In the final Sharapova will meet the Czech Kvitova, who moved into the final after a 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 victory over Victoria Azarenka.

Kvitova’s serve and stinging lefty forehand were too much for Azarenka, who was appearing in her first Slam semifinal. The Czech struck 13 winners to three unforced errors for a strong start in the first set, and after a second-set walkabout managed the same stats in the third set.

“At the beginning it was so close, the first three games, but when I broke her, I started playing even better and she was a little bit down, I think,” Kvitova said. “She started playing very well again in the second set and it was tough after. It was tough mentally but I’m happy I was able to win. It was good.”

Kvitova reached the semifinals at Wimbledon a year ago, and this year becomes the first lefty in 13 years to reach a Grand Slam final after Monica Seles at the 1998 French Open.

“It’s unbelievable to be in the final,” Kvitova said. “I remember Martina Navratilova winning here, those are my first memories. It’s special for me. Coming here I didn’t think I could win Wimbledon. I got some good practice in Eastbourne and won some matches, which was important for me, and when I came here I just played match after match. There was nothing more.”

Sharapova won her only previous meeting with Kvitova 6-4, 6-3 at the 2010 Memphis event on hardcourts.

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23 Comments for Sharapova, Kvitova Advance to Wimbledon Final

Anna Says:

I saw Kvitova play dc a few years back and thought she would aways be a 2nd tier player. Boy was I wrong. She has more grit than most and wallops the ball. I’ve been a Sharapova fan for years, but lately her scream has become more like a banshee shriek and it’s just annoying. At times it seems her opponent is taking their swing at the ball and Maria’s still shrieking. I’ve been annoyed with Serena and Venus for the same reason, when their scream becomes more of a cry for help.

Kimmi Says:

congrats for petra. great win and very happy for her. one more match petra. just watching the recording now.

Yes, definitely a future number 1. how easily does she produce those winners? both fh and bh are so big. I wished i could have believed on her more and pick her for my women bracket. grrrr!

i read the winners were 40 to petra and 11 for azarenka. big difference!!!!

Kimmi Says:

congrats to sharapova too. good to see her back in the mix.

so they have played only once. and sharapova is the winner. lets hope petra is a different player now

Kimmi Says:

very nervy form both players at the end. azarenka double faults on the matchpoint..awwwww! that must hurt.

well, petra needs to control her nerves in the final. sharapova will always fight. we know that.

its always tough to play the championship match with a grandslam champ. maria has been there before.. 4 times. hopefully we will have a good match. i have seen some first time finalist getting too nervous…

Kimberly Says:

I hope its
(1)great match
(2)Maria wins!

Kimberly Says:

Maria’s only loss at a GS final was where Serena Williams blasted her skinny _ss off the court in Australia. Maria couldn’t even get started. Never got into the match even though she kept fighting til the end. Kvitova needs to do the same to win.

Daniel Says:

How could Kvitova remember Navratilova winning Wimbledon?? By my calculation she would have only been a couple of months old when Martina won her last title in 1990!

margot Says:

Kvitova has a huge chance but Maria, with her awful injuries, operations etc has come fighting back after thinking she might not win again. I think she might be hungrier.
Her serve! …..Lindsy Davenport pointed out it’s all to do with the toss. So I started watching quite closely, sure enough when she throws the ball in front she’s falling into the serve and faults, when it’s straight up she doesn’t.
Practise those ball tosses, Maria!

EdgarCayce Says:

Go Kvitova!

WTF Says:

Shazza broke my heart. :(

I hope Kvitova beats her. I like Petra.

Kimberly Says:

Go Maria! Take it!

Super Says:

So my comment was deleted?? Maybe this is tennis-x’s implicit way of telling me to stop posting here.

Once more and I’ll get the picture.

Kimmi Says:

Hello petra, it is your time.

grendel Says:

Super – I’ve enjoyed your posts. Honestly, whilst knowing nothing about it, I think it’s highly unlikely anyone would have deleted your posts. Quite a few people have complained about posts going missing and it has happened to me – I’m fairly sure it’s just computer cock-ups. Why would I be sure? All sorts of trollish rubbish is allowed (as it should be, I’m not above a spot of trollish behaviour myself from time to time), so why would your gentle ruminations be disallowed? Makes no sense.

Ike Says:

I am just hoping for a great final and Kvitova winning it in 3 sets!
I don’t want to see someone winning this 6-2, 6-3 !!!

Kimberly Says:

i would love a great final too ut ill take a 6-2 6-3 if its maria winning!

Going to the Gym super early and then a beachfront cabana with a flatscreen to watch the match! Can’t wait! Must go to sleep. Hope Maria doesn’t get a clubbing. That would ruin my holiday!

V Blacklabel Says:

Gotta say, I think this is going 3 sets. Here are my predictions for both the men’s and women’s finals:

grendel Says:

Apparently, every woman to whom Azarenka has lost this year has gone on to win the tournament. Long may this benificent tradition continue – or at least until tomorrow…

Kimmi Says:

ha-ha grendel, that is amazing. yes, lets hope this continues.

wont be able to watch the match live but will record it. hope for great petra news when i watch the recording later.

Gabsvamos Says:

Go Maria!!! Make this a weekend of previous winners winning the titles…..

Ike Says:

I am totally rooting for Petra!
Never rooted for Maria, (there are tons of reasons why not to root for her).

grendel Says:

margot – are you watching young Liam Brody in the boys’ singles final? He’s up 2 breaks of serve already. He seems a very contained young man, and – well, here we go again, but lets put it this way – it would be surprising if he doesn’t at least make it into the top 100 at some point – quite an achievement for a Brit…..

grendel Says:

Broady takes the first set – not the greatest tennis, but he’s a good looking lefty all the same, strong on both wings. Lots and lots of room for development – but he’s young…

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