By Paul Lagan at Wimbledon
Svitolina v Vondrousova 3-6, 3-6
Marketa Vondrousova made it into the final with a straight sets win over Elina Svitolina.
But for a minor hiccough in the second set, this was a powerful display by the Czech Republic player.
The modern physique of the tennis player has produced an almost identikit group of players.
The only seemingly different aspect to these semi-finalists is that the Czech republic player Vondrousova is a leftie while Ukrainian Svitolina bangs her forehand down the line with her right.
Even their caps are the same.
So it was no surprise that the opening four games were the same, with no breaks of serve or even a sniff of one.
And then it happened Svitolina was whipped all over the Court and was beaten to love, the final point by Vondrousova was a lovely created backhand drive down the line to win the break.
Vondrousova Then went 30 love down, twice faced break point and filly succumbed to a needless unforced error to bring the match back to 3-3.
Holding your serve is all about holding your nerve, and both players suffered successive bouts of nerve loss, leaving the Czech player 4-3 and on serve which she held to love.
Svitolina then crumbled under the pressure and lost her serve miserably and Vondrousova took the first set 6-w in 29 minutes.
Svitolina needed an early break to halt the cycle of decline, but the leftie showed too much power and control to let the opening game of the set set slide.
Even long rally success eluded her.
A remarkable get down the line after blistering backhands by Svitolina gave advantage to the Czech player which she duly capitalised on to go 2-0 up.
A solid service game and a deflated opponent soon saw Vondrousova hold her game and that was after she already thought she won it, but a challenge saw Hawkeye overturn the point. It made little,difference as s subsequent ace secured the game and. 3-0 lead.
Vondrousova simply had too much craft and guile for the Ukraine, who despite trying even harder with her ground strokes was coming off second best most of the time.
Time and again a delicate drop shot by Svitolina saw Vondrousova clip the ball past her for a winner, and she lost her serve once again, staring defeat firmly in the face at 0-4 down.
Svitolina finally won a game winning on the third break point.to make it 4-1.
The inevitable might have been put on ice, but it allowed the crowd to hope that the match might take an unexpected turn. It helped that she then held her serve. To make it 4-2.
Incredibly the comeback was about to come to fruition s it was Vondrousova‘a turn to shatter under the pressure.
She lost her serve and it was back on serve at 3-4.
But again another twist as Svitolina lost her serve again, leaving Vondrousova to finally serve for the match.
She still had work to do as a double fault allied with a simple hit into the net to make it 30 all.
But after an hour and 14 minutes, she duly finished off the game with an ace and then a fine serve which was returned long.
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