Muguruza taking tips to beat Serena

2015-07-10 14:49
Garbine Muguruza. (Kirsty Wigglesworth, AP)

London - Garbine Muguruza was just nine months old in 1994 when Conchita Martinez became the last Spanish woman to win Wimbledon

But 21 years later, Martinez finds herself in the position of playing a key role in convincing her compatriot that she can pull off the seemingly impossible on Saturday and derail Serena Williams's bid to win a sixth Wimbledon crown.

"Well, we were laughing when the tournament started because I was like, Conchita, I'm not sure about grass," said Muguruza, recalling her conversation with Martinez who defeated Martina Navratilova in the 1994 final.

It was her only triumph at the majors and Navratilova's last appearance in a Grand Slam final.

"She's like, C'mon, you can play good. She's just telling me every day, every match, Keep going, you're doing great. Giving me power."

Muguruza was right to be cautious about her prospects at the All England Club.

Before the tournament began, the world number 20 had won just one match on grass this summer at Eastbourne after losing in the first round in Birmingham.

But the Venezuala-born Muguruza has been rejuvenated at Wimbledon, knocking out top 10 players Angelique Kerber and Caroline Wozniacki to make her first final at the majors.

She will also rise into the world top 10 next week, only the fourth Spanish woman to do so. If she beats world number one Williams, she will become the new world number six.

She has already defeated Williams, claiming a famous win at the French Open in 2014 on her way to the quarter-finals.

But the American is the overwhelming favourite on Saturday.

She will be playing in her eighth Wimbledon final, seeking a sixth title.

It's Williams' 25th Grand Slam final where victory will give her a 21st major title, just one behind the Open Era record of Steffi Graf.

She can also complete her second career "Serena Slam" by holding all four Grand Slam titles at the same time, leaving her with just the US Open to defend in September to complete the first calendar Grand Slam since Graf in 1988.

"I think it is the best final you can play, to have Serena in the Wimbledon final I think is the hardest match you can have," said Muguruza.

"If you want to win a Grand Slam, when you dream, you say, I want Serena in the final. She's like one of the best players in all these years."

Read more on:    wimbledon  |  tennis

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