Federer wins record 7th Wimbledon Crown

Roger Federer outgunned Andy Murray 4-6 7-5 6-3 6-4 to win a record-equaling seventh Wimbledon title and 17th Grand Slam crown. Federer will return to World No. 1 in the ATP Rankings on Monday.

The Swiss third seed recovered from a slow start to dominate the match and return to the top of the world rankings, ending Murray's hopes of becoming the first British man to win the title on home soil for 76 years.

FIRST SET: Federer and Murray walked out on Centre Court at 2 p.m.; barely 20 minutes after a light rain shower had forced ground staff to cover the sport’s grandest stage. As dark clouds passed overhead, Murray got off to a fine start by breaking Federer in the first game, with the Swiss hitting a forehand drive volley long at 30/40. Murray played with confidence in his first service game, attacking the short ball, to hold to 30. The Scot’s lead was short-lived, however, as Federer came back at him to win the next three games. Murray had three game points in the fourth game, but Federer upped his power level to quieten British support.

Murray continued to target Federer’s backhand in long rallies, but anything remotely short and Federer pounced, moving swiftly to hit forehands. The fourth seed dug deep at 3-4, saving two break points in a game that included five deuces. In the ninth game, Federer made two forehand errors that saw Murray earn two break point opportunities. Murray then got Federer off-balance to force a backhand error and went onto clinch the 57-minute set – his first set in his fourth Grand Slam championship final. He’d committed just five unforced errors.

SECOND SET: Federer continued to attack the net at the start of the second set, forcing Murray to weather an early storm by saving one break point at 0-1. It was Federer’s turn at 2-2, when he found himself at 15/40. Federer stayed positive and got back to deuce with service winners, but his forehand proved to be an area for concern. At 4-4, Federer found himself at 30/40. Hitting a second serve, he engaged Murray in a short baseline rally that ended when Murray over-hit a backhand.

In the next game, Murray moved into a 30/0 lead, but Federer won four straight points to level the score-line at one-set apiece. At 30/30, he hit a perfectly timed forehand drop volley, which Murray scrambled for, but struck long. Then, on set point, Federer played a well-constructed point, finishing with a backhand drop volley by cutting across it to take off the pace. It left Murray with no chance. Federer won 19 of his 25 net points and hit 19 winners during the 54-minute set.

THIRD SET: At 1-1, with Federer serving at 40/0, the finalists left Centre Court due to rain. At 4:20 p.m., with the players back in the locker room, Wimbledon Referee Andrew Jarrett decided to close the roof. At 4:45 p.m., Federer and Murray returned to the court.

The match went with serve until a dramatic sixth game, when Federer made his move. Murray, who led 40/0, was forced to save five break points with some big serves. But Federer proved to be relentless, and, in a 19-minute game featuring 10 deuces, he eventually wore down Murray, to break for a 4-2 lead, after Murray hit a slice backhand into the net. Federer won the third set with his fourth ace, having won a remarkable 85 per cent of his first service points.

FOURTH SET: Murray may have broken Federer for a 2-0 lead in the fourth set, but narrowly missed a forehand down the line, which he hit on the run. Federer’s forehand went from strength to strength and at 2-2, Murray found himself serving at 15/40. Federer took his first break point chance, drawing Murray to the net, before wrong-footing the Scot with a backhand crosscourt winner.

Murray’s error count started to increase as he attempted to break back, while Federer stuck to his service patterns and joined Pete Sampras and William Renshaw with seven Wimbledon titles. By closing out to 30, to seal the his 17th major championship, it also signalled Federer’s return to No. 1 in the South African Airways ATP Rankings.

“Today was unique because of playing Andy,” said Federer. “Obviously, being able to play or finish a match under the roof, I don't think that's ever been done before here for a final. So that's been different, as well. I'm happy I got a victory today, but obviously it was very, very special."

"I played some of my best tennis in my last couple of matches," Federer told the crowd after lifting the trophy."

"I couldn't be more happy. It feels great being back here as the winner and it's a great moment. It feels nice to have this trophy back after three years."

"This year, I guess, I decided in the bigger matches, to take it more to my opponent instead of waiting a bit more for the mistakes," said Federer. "This is, I guess, how you want to win Wimbledon, by going after your shots, believing you can do it, and that's what I was able to do today. It's special."

"This one hasn't quite sunk in yet for some reason. I guess I was trying to be so focused in the moment itself that when it all happened I was just so happy that it was all over and that the pressure was gone basically."

An emotional Murray struggled to hold himself together when he took the microphone after his first Wimbledon final.

"I am getting closer," Murray, who had twice lost to Federer in straight sets in grand slam finals, tearfully told the crowd. "I'd like to congratulate Roger. He played a great tournament and he's not bad for a 30-year-old."

“I thought I played a pretty good match,” said Murray. “There was a lot of close shots, a lot of close games, a lot of break points here and there. He played very, very well the last two sets especially. When the roof closed, he played unbelievable tennis.”

Date: 8th July 2012, Source: ATP and Reuters


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