The 2o12 Olympics at Wimbledon were filled with performances both contrary and in line with how the pros have been playing throughout the year. A quick rundown:
Men’s Singles Gold (Best out of five): Brit, Andy Murray, (Gold) beats Swiss, Roger Federer, (Silver) 6-2, 6-1, 6-4
Men’s Singles Bronze (Best out of three): Argentinian, Juan Martin Del Porto, (Bronze) beats Serbian, Novak Djokovic 7-5, 6-4
Women’s Singles Gold (Best out of three): American, Serena Williams (Gold) beats Russian, Maria Sharapova (Silver) 6-0, 6,1
Women’s Singles Bronze (Best out of three): Belarusian, Victoria Azarenka beat Russian, Maria Kirilenko 6-3, 6-4
After a disastrous start to the Grand Slam season, the world watched as Serena Williams took it all at Wimbledon in July, as chronicled earlier in this blog. (July Archives: “It’s Anyone’s Guess for Serena Williams”) Therefore, it really was no surprise to see her win on Centre Court again just weeks later – but the sheer domination of Maria Sharapova, (only winning one game against Williams) surpassed many who expected a close match. Sports Illustrated noted that it was “the most lopsided women’s finals in Olympic history.”
The medal secured Williams the “Career Golden Slam,” meaning she has now won every Grand Slam tournament, (though not in one season) in addition to gold in an Olympic Game. (Only achieved once previously by a female, Steffi Graff in 1988.) Williams also received gold in doubles with sister, Venus.
It was a sad day for Roger Federer, however, who would have also secured the “Golden Slam” for the first time had he defeated Andy Murray in the Single’s Gold match. History showed that he could have, as he has won over Murray in three Grand Slam finals, including last month at Wimbledon – the same grass where Federer has stood seven times victorious. (Read more: “You Have to Look Beneath the Surface, or Do You?”) BleacherReport called it a fluke, but a potential rematch in Queens at the end of the month will be a better teller. That rematch seems all the more likely since news broke that Rafael Nadal backed out of a recent Toronto tourney due to a knee injury.
But, no one should be so quick to count out Novak Djokovic, (“Novak ‘the Djoker’ Djokovic – Not Your Average ATP Second in the World” – August Archives). He has had an incredibly impressive two years He even skipped out of the Closing Ceremonies last night to travel to Toronto (where Nadal dropped out), and won his 31st tourney title.
The Olympics gave fans a lot to look forward to at the US Open – but we just have to sit back on our couches and stare at a television to see it. You can be sure, however, that the players’ celebration was short. They now have to train vigorously for the hard courts coming in a couple weeks, prepare for the effect of travel, new opponents, and a new venue.
Wishing them luck.