That would be the Dementieva vs. Williams match, wouldn’t it? My goodness, that was fun.
Serena and Elena battled it out in a riveting semifinal match today, with Serena eventually coming back from match point down in the third: 6-7 (4), 7-5, 8-6.
Elena enjoyed the experience, even though she squandered that match point opportunity:
Q. Do you think this is the best match ever you have played on grass?
ELENA DEMENTIEVA: Yeah, definitely, I think that was the best match on grass court. And that was the best match we ever played against each other. It was a real fight from the beginning till the end. You know, I just feel like, you know, finally I played some good tennis here.
Just, you know, was not easy to fight against her. She’s a great champion. She was, you know, serving very well today. You know, I wasn’t sure if it’s Serena or Andy Roddick on the other side, 125 all the time. You know, it was a huge percentage of the first serve.
You know, even with that I was able to break her a couple of times and I was in the lead in the third set. Like I said, she’s a fighter. Me, too. So was a good match.
Elena Dementieva is my favorite Russian (outside the sunny Siberian, Maria Sharapova.) Even back when her serve was more hustle than flow, she found a way to get to two Grand Slam finals. More than Safina, she’s the Russian that I think “deserves” a Major at this point. Glad to hear she has her eyes on the prize, too:
ELENA DEMENTIEVA: Well, I think only by playing these kind of matches you can improve, you know, because this is the players that I want to beat, to win a Grand Slam. And, you know, you have this experience playing very close match against Serena, I think it’s very positive.
So I’m gonna watch this match again. I’m gonna take some positive, you know, things from it and go forward.
Let’s go, Elena! I’ll be rooting for you at the US Open. Even though I’m jealous that you can look this good after sweating for three hours.
On Serena’s side of the net, she admitted to being pushed to the limits, saying: “I definitely had to dig deep, because I was playing a player that didn’t give me an inch, didn’t make too many errors, was playing a hundred percent.”
Serena, being the perfectionist/egotist that we all know and love, didn’t rank her own performance as an A++, however. Here are the money quotes from her presser:
Q. You seemed to be coming off your forehand the whole first set. You weren’t hitting through it.
SERENA WILLIAMS: I think that was for the whole match. My forehand didn’t show up today. I think he went to Hawaii. (Laughter).
But I’ve called him and asked her, I should say, to come back for the final. Hopefully she’ll be back.
Q. You did get it back occasionally.
SERENA WILLIAMS: Very occasionally. Maybe once or twice. I didn’t hit my best today.
But, you know, it’s always good to win when one of your stroke’s on vacation.
And now onto The Worst Match of the day, if not the tournament, if not the entire season. Venus Williams destroyed, obliterated, dismantled and humiliated Dinara Safina in the other semifinal: 6-1, 6-0.
Here’s a mind bender for you: The actual No. 1 seed won only one game against the real No. 1 seed.
I hate to take anything away from Venus’s amazing performance, but watching Dinara play is starting to make me sick to my stomach. Or am I being to hard on her, forgetting Roger Federer’s abysmal 1-6, 3-6, 0-6 loss to Nadal in last year’s French Open final? (My answer: once Dinara has 12 slams, she can start getting bageled in finals.)
At least we have a great final coming up! Williams vs. William XXI! I’ll have more on that later. For now, I’m still recovering from that match point Dementieva lost.