Venus, Goddess of Wimbledon

With Venus and Serena Williams both advancing to the Wimbledon quarterfinals today in breezy fashion, it’s seeming ever more likely that we are going to see the two sisters duel in a repeat of last year's final. You never want to be too confident of these things, because the improbable upset always looms out there on Centre Court. But given their Wimby track record, and given the way they are both playing right now, betting on them to advance through to the final seems about as safe as betting on Tiger Woods to make the cut at the British Open. ↵

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↵If it happens, it would be the seventh Grand Slam final between the two sisters, a simply astonishing feat, and their fourth Wimbledon final against each other. It also would be the second time that they’ve played in back-to-back finals at Wimbledon – they faced each other in the 2002 and 2003 finals as well, with Serena winning both of those matches. ↵

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↵Those were Serena’s only two Wimbledon singles titles to date, while Venus, with her victory over Serena in last year’s final, currently holds five Wimbledon singles crowns to her name. Much has been written about Roger Federer’s quest at this Wimbledon to surpass Pete Sampras's record by winning his 15th career Grand Slam singles title. Though it is a lesser mark, Venus Williams also stands to make quite a place for herself in history should she win her sixth Wimbledon this year. ↵

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↵It would tie her at fourth place with Billie Jean King and Suzanne Lenglen on the all-time list of women’s Wimbledon singles titles, with only Steffi Graf (seven), Helen Wills (eight), and of course Martina Navritilova (nine), having won more. ↵

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↵There is also the question of Wimbledon titles won in the Open era to consider, a distinction that is taken very seriously in the tennis world (the Open era began in 1968). On that list, Venus is currently alone in third place in Wimbledon women’s singles titles behind Graf and Navritilova, and winning a sixth title would put her just one short of second-place Graf’s mark of seven. ↵

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↵In short, while the Williams’ sisters have long staked their claim as the greatest sister duo ever to grace a tennis court, a win in this year’s Wimbledon final would mark yet another step for Venus Williams as she slowly but surely advances through the ranks of the greatest grass court players in the history of the game. When you factor in that Venus is only 29 years old and seems as fit and motivated as a teenager (when it comes time for Wimbledon, at least), surpassing Graf seems well within her reach, and even Navritilova’s amazing record seems possible, as does the historic title that Martina now holds as her own – The All-Time Queen of Centre Court. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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