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Novak Djokovic wins Wimbledon men’s final

Novak Djokovic, showing few effects from his marathon semifinal victory 24 hours earlier, won his fourth Wimbledon men’s singles title Sunday, defeating Kevin Anderson 6-2, 6-2, 7-6(3) at The All-England  Lawn Tennis Club.

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It was also the 13th career Grand Slam victory for Djokovic, 31, and the first for the Serb since the 2016 French Open. Anderson, the eighth seed, lost his second Grand Slam final. He lost to Rafael Nadal in the 2017 U.S. Open title match.

Djokovic was coming off a grueling semifinal against Nadal, winning 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(9), 3-6, 10-8 in a 5-hour, 15-minute duel. It was the second-longest semifinal in Wimbledon history that began Friday and had to be resumed Saturday because of curfew rules.

The longest semifinal match was held Friday, when Anderson, 31, topped John Isner in a 7-hour, 36-minute five-set marathon.

Temperatures on Centre Court broke 100 degrees as the two finalists began play.

Celebrities in the stands included Hugh Grant, Eddie Redmayne, Tom Hiddleston and Benedict Cumberbatch.

Djokovic, the 12th seed, defeated Anderson in 2 hours, 15 minutes and took the first set in 29 minutes.  He improved to 6-1 against Anderson and defeated the South African for the third time at Wimbledon.

Angelique Kerber defeats Serena Williams in Wimbledon final

German tennis star Angelique Kerber beat Serena Williams 6-3, 6-3 in the women’s final Saturday at Wimbledon, taking home her first championship title.

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Williams, 36, fell short of her eighth Wimbledon trophy and a chance to score a record 24th Grand Slam title at Wimbledon.

The match between Kerber and Williams was stalled for over an hour Saturday, until after the men’s semifinal between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal was completed.

Saturday’s tournament was Williams’ fourth appearance since she began her comeback after a 14-month hiatus. Williams came into the fortnight ranked No. 181 and was seeded 25th at Wimbledon because of her previous success at the event.

Williams’ victory would have made her the fourth mother ever to win a Grand Slam event.

Williams gave birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia in September 2017. She had to deal with a health scare after the emergency cesarean section when small blood clots were found on her lungs, CNN reported.

The last time Williams and Kerber met in a Grand Slam final was at Wimbledon in 2016. That year, Williams won her seventh major title on grass, 7-5, 6-3.

That was Williams’ second straight Wimbledon title, won in the early stages of her pregnancy. She sat out last year’s grass-court tournament after winning the Australian Open several months earlier.

Her first Grand Slam tournament was the French Open. Williams won three matches before withdrawing because of an injured chest muscle.

Serena Williams joins Meghan Markle to watch Prince Harry at polo match

Tennis star Serena Williams took time off from her preparations to chase her eighth Wimbledon women’s singles title to join Meghan Markle in Ascot on Saturday to watch Prince Harry and Prince William compete in the Audi Polo Challenge, the Sunday Express reported.

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Williams, who has won seven women’s singles titles at Wimbledon, was accompanied by her husband, Alexis Ohanian. Williams canceled her pre-tournament news conference to attend the polo match, The Guardian reported. 

Williams, who won her seventh Wimbledon crown in 2016 before giving birth to her first child, is ranked 25th in this year’s tournament. She attended the royal wedding last month at Windsor Castle.

Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, attended the match to watch her husband, who made a surprise visit at a polo match for the second straight day, the Daily Mail reported.

Prince Harry attended a charity match at British Polo Day in Oxfordshire on Friday, the Daily Mail reported, helping to raise nearly $265,000.

Rafael Nadal wins 11th French Open men's title

Rafael Nadal continued his dominance at the French Open, winning the men’s singles title for the 11th time Sunday, ESPN reported.

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Nadal defeated Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 to capture his 17th Grand Slam title, second only among men to the 20 won by Roger Federer.

Nadal overcame a problem with his left middle finger during the third set to defeat the No. 7 seed from Austria. The Spaniard was leading 2-1 when he stopped serving because he could not straighten his finger, ESPN reported. After receiving a salt pill and an arm massage by his trainer, Nadal resumed play and closed out the match.

Nadal’s 11 French Open men’s titles are a record at Roland Garros. He won his first title in 2005, and all of his championships have occurred during the Open era. He owns an 86-2 record at the French Open.

Max Decugis won eight French titles between 1903 and 1914; in the Open era, Bjorn Borg won six men’s crowns between 1974 and 1981.

Nadal matched the all-time record of most singles titles won at the same Grand Slam event, set by Margaret Court at the Australian Open in the 1960s and ’70s, Reuters reported.

Former Brazilian tennis great Maria Bueno dead at 78

Maria Bueno, a Brazilian who won three Wimbledon women’s singles titles and four U.S. Open crowns during the 1950s and ’60s and was also known for her controversial tennis attire, died Friday, the BBC reported. She was 78.

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Bueno was admitted to a hospital in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Tuesday, The Telegraph reported. The hospital released a statement confirming her death, the newspaper reported.

Bueno, nicknamed the “Tennis Ballerina” for her grace and style during tennis’ pre-Open era, won 19 Grand Slam titles. In addition to her seven singles titles, she won 11 doubles championships and one mixed doubles title. She also reached the finals at the French Open and Australian Open.

Bueno also was the world’s top-ranked women’s player in 1959, 1960, 1964 and 1966. From 1957 to 1967 she won 65 singles tournaments, 90 doubles crowns and 15 mixed doubles titles. She was a runner-up in 45 events. Bueno was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1978. 

In 1964, Bueno caused a stir at Wimbledon when she wore a white dress designed by Ted Tinling that had a pink underskirt and matching pink underwear.

"There was a gasp from one end of the court," Bueno said years later. "And the people the other end didn't know why, until I changed ends and served from there.

"Later I wore panties that resembled the club colors, which outraged the club committee and they brought in the all-white clothing rule."

Serena Williams withdraws from French Open due to injury

Serena Williams has withdrawn from the French Open.

USA Today reported that, according to French TV, the the 36-year-old pulled out of the match because of an arm injury.

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Williams recently returned to tennis after giving birth to her first child, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., and marrying Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.

Williams was due to play against Maria Sharapova in a fourth-round match at the Open. She and her sister, Venus Williams, lost in a doubles match Sunday to Andreja Klepac and Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez.

“I've had issues with the right pectoral muscle to the point where I can't serve,” Williams said at a news conference addressing her withdrawal, according to BBC News.

Williams said her appearance at Wimbledon will depend on her MRI results.

“I’ll have a scan. I won’t know about Wimbledon until I get the results.”

“I’ve never felt this in my life so I don’t really know how to manage it yet, but this is a little different,” Williams said. “I’m clueless as to what to do.”

The injury, Williams said, makes her unable to serve. She said she did not have problems with it before the tournament.

Sports Illustrated reported that Williams also expressed disappointment over the withdrawal because of her time away from her family.

“I’m beyond disappointed,” she said. “I gave up so much from time with my daughter and time with my family all for this moment. So it’s really difficult to be in this situation.”

On her Instagram page, Williams said the withdrawal is “just the beginning,” thanking fans for their support.

“You always live to fight for another chance,” Williams captioned a photo of herself serving at the tournament. “I’ve done a lot of fighting and this is just the beginning. Thank you a for the support. I love you.”

Williams won the French Open in 2002, 2013 and 2015. The French Open was her first major since the 2017 Australian Open.

Serena Williams on postpartum depression: ‘I wanted to be perfect’

Tennis champion Serena Williams is opening up about the difficulties of being a new mother.

In her cover story for the July issue of Harper’s Bazaar UK, Williams talked about her struggle with postpartum depression after the birth of her daughter, Alexis Olympia, who is now 8 months old.

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“Honestly, sometimes I still think I have to deal with it,” Williams said. “I think people need to talk about it more because it’s almost like the fourth trimester, it’s part of the pregnancy. I remember one day, I couldn’t find Olympia’s bottle and I got so upset I started crying ... because I wanted to be perfect for her.”

The 23-time Grand Slam champion, 36, gave birth to her daughter via emergency cesarean section. Shortly after, Williams also suffered from a pulmonary embolism, she told Vogue magazine in January.

Williams said that through it all, she believes she has been a good mother to her baby girl.

“I hope I am, and I’m going to strive to be the best mom I can be,” Williams said.

Serena Williams makes successful return, wins first match since giving birth

She said she was a little rusty, but Serena Williams had few problems as she won her first match in 14 months.

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Williams, who took a break after the birth of her first child, defeated Zarina Divas of Kazakhstan 7-5, 6-3 in the first round of the BNP Paribas Open on Thursday night, ESPN reported.

"It was incredible,'' Williams said after the 90-minute match. “It's been over a year and a kid later and I get to go home to her now, and I'm excited about that.''

Williams last competed in January 2017, when she won the Australian Open. She gave birth to daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. six months ago.

Her husband, Redditt co-founder Alexis Ohanian, was in Williams’ box to watch, along with her mother Oracene, and sisters Lyndrea and Isha, ESPN reported. Older sister Venus Williams watched from a balcony seat in an upper-level box.

"It definitely wasn't easy,'' Serena Williams said. "We always have a couple tight sets. It was good. I'm a little rusty, but it doesn't matter. I'm just out here on this journey and doing the best I can.''

Roger Federer becomes first man to win 20 Grand Slam singles titles

Roger Federer became the first man to win 20 Grand Slam tennis singles titles Sunday, defeating Marin Cilic 6-2, 6-7 (7-5), 6-3, 6-1, 6-1 to capture his record-tying sixth Australian Open championship.

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Federer tied Roy Emerson and Novak Djokovic with his sixth Australian crown and has won three of the last five major tournaments, ESPN reported.

“I'm so happy. It's unbelievable,” said Federer, who broke down in tears after the victory. “Of course, winning is an absolute dream come true -- the fairy tale continues for me.

“After the great year I had last year, it's incredible.”

In addition to his six Australian Open titles, Federer’s Grand Slam résumé includes eight Wimbledon titles, five U.S. Open championships and one French Open title. 

Sunday’s victory meant that Federer, at 36 years and 173 days, is the second-oldest man to win a Grand Slam title in the Open era. Ken Rosewall won the 1972 Australian Open when he was 37.

Federer has spent 302 weeks ranked No. 1 in the world during his career and now owns 96 titles. 

“Big congratulations to Roger and his team -- it's amazing what you guys do," Cilic said. "It was an amazing journey for me to come here to the final. I had a slight chance at the beginning of the fifth (set), but Roger played a great fifth set.”

Federer now owns a 9-1 record against Cilic, including a victory in last year’s Wimbledon final.

Tennis greats weighed in with their congratulations.

Tennis greats weighed in with their congratulations.

“Nobody makes me cry like Roger Federer,” tweeted Chris Evert, an 18-time Grand Slam winner and two-time Australian Open women’s singles title winner. “No one. … there is no one like him.”

“Congratulations Roger -- the GOAT!!” tweeted Martina Navratilova, another 18-time Grand Slam champion who won three women’s titles in Australia.

Billie Jean King added her best wishes as well, tweeting “Congratulations to @rogerfederer@AustralianOpen men’s singles champion and GOAT!”

Meanwhile, Rod Laver, who won 11 Grand Slams and three titles in his native Australia, called the six Australian titles won by Federer, Emerson and Djokovic as “Astonishing then, incredible now.”

Caroline Wozniacki first Dane to win Grand Slam tennis title

Caroline Wozniacki now can savor a major victory. Plus, the Dane will regain the top spot in women’s tennis.

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Wozniacki won her first Grand Slam tennis title Saturday when she defeated top-seeded Simona Halep 7-6 (7-2), 3-6 to capture the women’s singles title at the Australian Open.

On a broiling day in Melbourne, the second-seeded Wozniacki outdueled Halep in a match that lasted nearly three hours to become the first player from Denmark to win a Grand Slam singles event.

“My voice is shaking,” Wozniacki said as she held the championship trophy aloft. “I never cry, but this is an emotional moment.”

It was the first time in the Open era of tennis that players ranked No. 1 and 2 met in a major final without either player having a Grand Slam title to their credit, ESPN reported.

Because of the high temperatures, the heat rule was implemented for the first time during the tournament, CNN reported. Each player took medical timeouts, and their stamina was challenged as two games lasted more than 10 minutes.

Finally securing a Grand Slam was a relief for Wozniacki, who lost in the finals at the U.S. Open in 2009 and 2014. She will never be remembered as a player who was ranked No. 1 in women’s tennis for 85 weeks -- including 67 in a row in 2011-2012 -- but could not win a major title.

“I think that's one of the most positive things about all of this,” Wozniacki said. “I'm never going to get that question again. I'm just waiting for the question, ‘When are you going to win the second one?’

“Right now I'm just happy I have this one, and I'm going to really enjoy this moment.”

Wozniacki will regain that No. 1 spot again Monday when the new rankings are released, CNN reported.

Halep was trying to become the second women’s player from Romania to win a Grand Slam singles event. Her manager, Virginia Ruzici, won the French Open women’s singles title in 1978.

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