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Muguruza beats Serena to win French Open

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By IANS Updated: Jun 05, 2016 12:02 am
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Paris, June 4: For the third consecutive Grand Slam event, Serena Williams failed to tie Steffi Graf’s Open-era record as she lost 7-5, 6-4 to fourth-seeded Garbine Muguruza at the French Open on Saturday.

In winning her first major, Muguruza used her powerful groundstrokes to keep No. 1 Williams off-balance and overcame signs of nerves in the form of nine double-faults to pull off the surprise.

Muguruza also managed to deal with Williams’ dangerous serve, breaking three consecutive times from late in the first set to early in the second en route to beating Williams for the second time in three years at Roland Garros. In 2014, she handed Williams the worst loss of her Grand Slam career with a 6-2, 6-2 victory in the second round.

After letting four match points slip away in the penultimate game, Muguruza served out the match at love, punctuated by a high lob that caught the baseline as Williams watched.

The winning shot drew a smile from Williams’ face as she then applauded Muguruza, who put her face in her hands and fell on her back in the red clay of Court Philippe Chatrier as her coach Sam Sumyk jumped from his chair and raised both arms in the air.

The 22-year-old Muguruza, who lost to Williams in the 2015 final at Wimbledon, became the first Spanish woman to win a Grand Slam title since Arantxa Sanchez Vicario won the last of her three French Open crowns in 1998.

“I can’t explain with words how this day means to me,” Muguruza said after the match. “You work all your life to get here.”

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By IANS Updated: Jun 05, 2016 12:02:28 am