Tears as Serena’s fairytale dashed
WIMBLEDON queen Serena Williams was sensationally denied her eighth grass court crown in an incredible capitulation against German Angelique Kerber in the Ladies' Final on Sunday morning (AEST).
The 23-major winner's fairytale return to professional tennis following the birth of her daughter was marred by a whopping 24 unforced errors, handing Kerber her third grand slam and first Wimbledon title.
The title match, while treating fans to lengthy rallies and glimpses of the 36-year-old's renowned precision and power on-court, took just an hour and five minutes before Kerber - who hit just five unforced errors - was lifting the sport's crown jewel.
Williams was gracious in defeat, sharing a laugh with the victor before receiving a standing ovation from the crowd.
"It was such an amazing tournament for me," a teary Williams said.
"It's obviously disappointing but I can't be disappointed. There's so much to look forward to. It was such an amazing tournament for me. I was really happy to get this far.
"I'm just me, that's all I can be. Angelique played really well. It was really good and I'm looking forward to continue being out here.
"She's an incredible person and a good friend, I'm really happy for her and I hope she can enjoy this moment."
Williams was praised for her resilient fightback to play in the biggest match of the year months after battling through birth complications.
"I am just me, and that's all I can be. To all the mums out there, I was playing for you today," she said.
Kerber shared words of encouragement for Williams, who fell just short of Margaret Court's all-time major record of 24, after the match.
"I'm sure you'll have your next grand slam title soon, congrats on you coming back," Kerber said.
"I knew I had to play my best, it's always an honour sharing a court with her. (To the fans) thank you for all the support for the past two weeks."