Thursday, July 7, 2011

Previewing the Sharapova-Kvitova Wimbledon final

Maria Sharapova plays for her second Wimbledon title on Saturday against No. 9 seed Petra Kvitova. Busted Racquet previews and predicts the final.


? Sharapova is playing in her fourth Grand Slam final. She's won three -- Wimbledon, 2004; U.S. Open, 2006; and Australian Open, 2008. This is the first major final for Kvitova.

? With a victory, Sharapova would move to No. 3 in the world. Kvitova is No. 7 with a win.

? Sharapova hasn't lost a set en route to the final. She's held opponents to three games or less in nine of her 12 sets.

? In the Open era, 20 of the 62 women playing in their first Grand Slam final have gone on to win the match.

? Mindblowing stat No. 1: If Sharapova�wins, she'll become the youngest Wimbledon champion since she won as a 17-year-old in 2004. She is 24.

Mindblowing stat No. 2: This is only the fourth final since 1977 that doesn't include either Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf or one of the Williams sisters.


Sharapova -- Groundstrokes, experience, movement

Kvitova -- Serve, returns, aggressiveness


Sharapova -- First serve, second serve

Kvitova -- Aggressiveness, inexperience

The Czech's return of Sharapova's second serve will be a crucial factor in the match. Sharapova had 13 double faults in her straight-set win over Sabine Lisicki in the semifinals. Lisicki was tentative in returning the second serves. Kvitova won't do Sharapova any such favors. Look for the world No. 9 to go for winners off Sharapova's second serve, making it all the more important for her to land her first serves in the box.


Sharapova in straight sets.

Miranda Kerr Sarah Shahi Anna Paquin Diane Kruger Magdalena Wróbel

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