Women singles final
Lisicki vs Bartoli
LONDON. No one would have guessed that Sabine Lisicki is allergic to grass as she joyfully rolled on the most famous rectangle of turf after surviving a heart-pumping, nerve-jangling epic to set up a mind-boggling Wimbledon final against Marion Bartoli.
A final that had odds of 1,500-1 at the start of the tournament became a reality on a hot and sticky Thursday afternoon as Lisicki, relying on a thunderbolt serve and sheer force of will, ended the brave resistance of Agnieszka Radwanska with a 6-4 2-6 9-7 win.
Bartoli’s tactics were more unconventional as the French 15th seed enjoyed a 20-minute power nap shortly before her semi-final and woke up to inflict a 6-1 6-2 nightmare on Belgian outsider Kirsten Flipkens.
Fans who might have been feeling short-changed following Bartoli’s 63-minute demolition job having forked out $150 for a ticket, certainly got their money’s worth of drama and dazzling court craft as Lisicki showed the fight that helped her to jettison Serena Williams in the fourth round.
The German 23rd seed showed why she had an 18-4 win-loss record at the All England Club - but 16-15 at the other slams - as she clawed back from 3-0 down to win the longest third set in a women’s semi-final here since Conchita Martinez squeezed past Lori McNeil 10-8 in 1994.
After outlasting last year’s runner-up and fourth seed Radwanska in a two hour 18 minute sweat-fest, Lisicki could not stop beaming.
“It was unbelievable, the last few games were so exciting. Agnieszka played so well, it was a battle and I’m so happy to have won it,” said Lisicki, whose smile has lit up a Wimbledon full of shocks and surprises.
“I was just fighting for every single point out there. I didn’t know how it would end, I fought with all my heart but I believed I could win no matter what the score was.”