Angelique Kerber storms into second Wimbledon final, set to face Serena Williams

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Ostapenko, who has a volatile game, finally broke Kerber's serve in the second set, but by that point she was already down 1-5 and it wasn't enough.

Playing in only her second grand slam event since she almost lost her life after giving birth 10 months ago, the American struck 16 winners and just seven unforced errors as she defeated the 13th-seeded German 6-2 6-4 on Centre Court. Following the baby's delivery, Williams had a number of health issues, including a pulmonary embolism and a hematoma, which led to her having multiple surgeries.

Even after all of that, even after more than a year away from the game, even in only the fourth tournament of her comeback, Williams showed she's still capable of dominance.

She said: "Every year for a couple years she comes out to Wimbledon and has supported me". I don't think Serena is the greatest mover on the court, and that is how Camila Giorgi took her to the limit.

Although Williams won that match in straight sets to claim her seventh Wimbledon championship and the 22nd of her 23 Grand Slam titles, she noted that Kerber, who has two Grand Slam titles of her own, is a more experienced, risky opponent today than she was two years ago. With Grand Slam win No. 24, she will equal Margaret Court as the all-time Slams leader and ditch the Open era asterisk. By the end, Ostapenko had far more winners, 30-10, and far more unforced errors, 36-7. "That for me is the difference - she's a real warrior - that's to be admired more than anything else". But it was Kerber who played the smarter game, keeping her cool, counter-punching whenever possible, and refusing to be rattled by the screaming winners that her opponent hit time and again.

With 23 major singles titles to her credit, Williams could easily have chose to call it a career at age 36.

"I don't know if it's been the toughest, because I have Olympia".

"Even if you do break her (serve), you encounter a fresh problem: you make Serena mad - and she likes to retaliate immediately".

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The change paid off, with Kerber now playing for the Wimbledon title after a quarterfinal spot at Roland nGarros last month and a semifinal place at the Australian Open at the start of the season.

She's been wearing compression leggings during her matches as a precaution and says she remains nervous.

How do you beat her?

Or, more to the point on this afternoon, how such a stinging serve and big groundstrokes didn't help her avoid first-round exits each of the past five years at Wimbledon. "This was not inevitable for me". She's here to win. So I remember I couldn't even walk to my mailbox, so it's definitely not normal for me to be in a Wimbledon final. The 30-year-old has bounced back from a awful 2017 and is close to the form that brought her the Australian and US Open titles two years ago.

But when the steely-eyed Williams imposed her iron will, the challenger was unable to reply, dropping five games straight to surrender the first set and fall behind in the second.

For 29-year-old Goerges, Thursday's outing was not completely a lost cause because despite the mauling, she had finally made it to a semi-final at one of the four majors - albeit on her 42nd attempt.

If Ms Williams takes the title on Sunday, she will write herself into the Wimbledon history books.

Fittingly, Williams' daughter was in the Centre Court crowd as tennis's latest super-mum dismantled Goerges like she needed to get her 10-month-old back home in time for an afternoon nap.