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AFP
July 14, 2018
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Late bloomer Kerber keeps on growing

Sports

AFP
July 14, 2018

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LONDON: Angelique Kerber is the poster girl for late bloomers everywhere.The German left-hander, who will attempt to gatecrash Serena Williams’s storybook comeback in Saturday’s (today’s) Wimbledon final, was once in danger of joining a long list of players whose rewards never reflected their potential.

But with the clock ticking, and having already celebrated her 28th birthday, Kerber stunned Williams in the 2016 Australian Open final to claim her maiden Grand Slam title.Six months later, she was runner-up to Williams at Wimbledon before adding a second career major at the US Open with victory over Karolina Pliskova.

The win in New York also saw her ascend to the world number one ranking, making Kerber the oldest woman to take top spot.Kerber, who had won 11 career titles compared to Williams’s 72, has not been afraid to make tough decisions.

Coach Torben Beltz guided her through one of her best seasons in 2012 and was re-hired in 2015 after she split with Benjamin Ebrahimzadeh.However, after a torrid 2017, Kerber and Beltz parted ways once again.

In came highly-regarded Wim Fissett.A run to the Australian Open semi-finals followed as did a return to the top 10.The 30-year-old’s quarter-final spot at Roland Garros last month was her best performance in Paris in six years.

“In 2017 there were a few ups and downs,” said Kerber who finished last year out of the top 10 for the first time since 2012.“To come back this year, I think I learned so many things about me, about who I am and what is really important in the life.”

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