Muguruza stuns Venus to win first Wimbledon title

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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza celebrates winning a point against US player Venus Williams during their women’s singles final match on the twelfth day of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 15, 2017. (AFP)
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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza returns to Venus Williams of the United States Women’s Singles final match on day twelve at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Saturday, July 15, 2017. (AP)
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Garbine Muguruza’s coach Conchita Martinez looks toward her during the final against Venus Williams of the US. (Reuters)
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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza poses with The Venus Rosewater Dish as she celebrates beating US player Venus Williams to win the women’s singles final on the twelfth day of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 15, 2017. Muguruza won 7-5, 6-0. (AFP)
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Spain's Garbine Muguruza celebrates after winning against US player Venus Williams during their women's singles final match on the twelfth day of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 15, 2017. Muguruza won 7-5, 6-0. (AFP)
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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza returns against US player Venus Williams during their women’s singles final match on the twelfth day of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 15, 2017. (AFP)
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Tennis - Wimbledon - London, Britain - July 15, 2017 Spain’s Garbine Muguruza in action during the final against Venus Williams of the U.S. REUTERS/Matthew Childs
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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza celebrates after winning against US player Venus Williams during their women’s singles final match on the twelfth day of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 15, 2017. Muguruza won 7-5, 6-0. (AFP)
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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza celebrates as she beats Venus Williams of the United States to win the Women’s Singles final match on day twelve at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Saturday, July 15, 2017. (AP)
Updated 15 July 2017

Muguruza stuns Venus to win first Wimbledon title

LONDON: Garbine Muguruza stormed to her first Wimbledon title and shattered Venus Williams’ history bid with a majestic 7-5, 6-0 victory in Saturday’s final.
Muguruza overwhelmed Williams with a supreme display of power hitting in 77 minutes on Center Court to become only the second Spanish woman to win Wimbledon.
Watched from the Royal Box by King Juan Carlos of Spain, the 23-year-old finally got her hands on the Venus Rosewater Dish two years after losing to the American’s sister Serena in her maiden Wimbledon final.
Fittingly, it was Muguruza’s current coach Conchita Martinez who was the first woman to raise the Spanish flag at Wimbledon in 1994 when she defeated Martina Navratilova.
Venezuela-born Muguruza’s second Grand Slam title, following her French Open triumph last year, denied Williams, 37, in her attempt to become the oldest Wimbledon champion in the Open era.
Back in the Wimbledon final after an eight-year absence, Williams had hoped to clinch a sixth All England title, nine years after she last lifted the trophy.
Instead, she paid the price for a surprisingly nerve-ridden display that condemned her to a second Grand Slam disappointment this year following her Australian Open final loss against Serena.
Since winning her maiden Grand Slam title in Paris, Muguruza had endured something of a sophomore slump as her ranking dropped out of the top 10.
But she has rediscovered her mojo on grass and will climb to fifth when the new rankings are confirmed next week.
Remarkably, of her four tour-level titles, two are now Grand Slams.
With persistent drizzle blanketing the All England Club, Williams and Muguruza were competing in the first Wimbledon final to begin under the roof, watched by a sell-out crowd including Hollywood actress Hilary Swank.
Twenty years ago, Venus admitted she was a bundle of nerves when she made a losing Wimbledon debut against Magdalena Grzybowska and, in her ninth All England Club final, once again there was anxiety coursing through the American’s error-strewn display.
Fortified by a cross-court winner to bring up break point at 3-2, Williams looked poised to seize control, but instead a tame forehand into the net to let Muguruza off the hook.

It was the first of a series of vital escapes for Muguruza, who was matching Venus blow for blow in a series of bruising baseline rallies.
Gifted two set point at 4-5, Venus couldn’t deliver the knockout blow and Muguruza over-powered her in a gripping rally to save the first before scrambling out of trouble on the second.
Muguruza had the momentum now, her piercing ground-strokes gradually moving Williams into enough awkward areas to land the crucial first break at 5-5.
Williams was rattled by Muguruza’s barrage, fatally allowing the Spaniard’s lob to drop in and present her with set points that she gleefully gobbled up.
Muguruza was just six when Venus first won Wimbledon and the 23-year-old’s third major final appearance was dwarfed by Williams’ 16 Grand Slam title matches.
But in all those finals, only Serena had produced the lethal power and poise Muguruza was showing and suddenly Williams was beginning to look her age.
Still reeling from the shock of losing the first set, she served up a limp double fault on break point to hand Muguruza the lead at the start of the second set.
Williams was shattered and Muguruza went for the kill so ruthlessly that in the blink of an eye she had broken twice more to take a 5-0 lead.
Muguruza had spoken eloquently this week of etching her name onto the Wimbledon honors board alongside Venus, Serena and the other All England Club icons.
It took one last blizzard of thunderous winners to ensure her dream would come true.


Arsenal, Roma open Europa League with comeback wins

Updated 22 October 2020

Arsenal, Roma open Europa League with comeback wins

Arsenal opened its fourth straight Europa League campaign with a 2-1 come-from-behind win at Rapid Vienna on Thursday in an opening round of games affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Star striker Pierre­ Emerick Aubameyang came off the bench to score the winning goal in the 74th for Arsenal, which won its group in its previous three campaigns in the second-tier European competition.
Roma also came from a goal down to win 2-1 at Young Boys, as did Granada to upset PSV Eindhoven away.
Rangers’ Kemar Roofe scored the goal of the night in a 2-0 victory at Standard Liege, dribbling his way through three opponents inside his own half and then launching a shot from the halfway line that caught the goalkeeper off guard and looped into the net.
Dutch team AZ Alkmaar overcame a slew of coronavirus cases to upset Napoli 1-0.
Tottenham, AC Milan were among teams playing later Thursday.
Arsenal went behind when goalkeeper Bernd Leno played a poor pass that fell to Rapid forward Taxiarchis Fountas, who slotted in a low shot from a tough angle in the 51st minute.
Arteta sent on Aubameyang and Héctor Bellerín in the 61st, and the substitutes helped spark the comeback.
After David Luiz headed in a free kick from Nicolas Pépé to level the score, Mohamed Elneny freed Bellerín down the right to cross for Aubameyang to complete the comeback from close range.
In the other Group B game, Molde also came from behind to win 2-1 at Dundalk.
AZ Alkmaar flew into Naples with 13 players sidelined with coronavirus infections. Napoli, meanwhile, was coming off a 4-1 win over high-scoring Atalanta 4-1 this past weekend. But the Dutch staved off the hosts’ pressure before Dani de Wit scored the winner in the 57th. Real Sociedad won 1-0 at Rijeka the other Group F game.
With Roma resting striker Edin Džeko, Bruno Peres and Marash Kumbulla led the rally with the second-half goals for the Italian side.
Jean ­Pierre Nsame had given Young Boys the lead by converting a penalty kick in the 14th.
It was the first home loss for Young Boys to an Italian opponent in European competitions after beating Udinese, Napoli and Juventus.
Also in Group A, Romania’s Cluj won 2-0 at Bulgaria’s CSKA Sofia.
In Group C, Bayer Leverkusen produced the biggest win of the early games by beating Nice 6-2. Nadiem Amiri and Lucas Alario scored early first-half goals five minutes apart for Leverkusen, while substitute Karim Bellarabi netted two and 17-year-old forward Florian Wirtz came off the bench to complete the rout.
In a game between teams from two countries whose domestic leagues have been interrupted due to high levels of coronavirus infections, Israel’s Hapoel Beer-Sheva beat Czech Republic’s Slavia Prague 3-1.
James Tavernier gave Celtic the lead from the penalty spot in the 19th before Roofe added his spectacular second goal in injury time. Benfica won 4-2 at Lech Poznan in the other Group D game.
In Group E, German forward Mario Götze put PSV ahead in first-half injury time before Jorge Molina and Darwin Machis scored for Granada in the second half. Omonoia drew with PAOK 1-1.