The Best Wimbledon Finals Part 1

AP / Ben Curtis, file

The Best Wimbledon Finals Part 1

The first of a two-part series, we look at the best Wimbledon finals in the Open Era.

This will be a tough two-part blog just because there are so many to choose from. Plus, this is totally subjective to my opinion. That being said, the following five finals come to mind as some of the best ever! 

Edberg vs Becker, 1989: 

In a thrilling clash, Stefan Edberg (No. 2 seed) faced Boris Becker (No. 3 seed). Edberg showcased his finesse while Becker displayed his power. The match went to five sets, with Becker prevailing 6-0, 7-6, 6-4. The victory marked Edberg’s second consecutive Wimbledon title. I consider this one of the greatest finals because Becker was a force to be reckoned on the grass and this final displayed his full arsenal at its best. It was a joy to watch.

Borg vs McEnroe, 1980: 

A legendary showdown unfolded between Bjorn Borg (No. 1 seed) and John McEnroe (No. 2 seed). This dramatic encounter culminated in a thrilling five-setter, with Borg clinching a 1-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-7, 8-6 victory. Borg’s win secured his fifth consecutive Wimbledon crown. This match featured the epic fourth set tie break which McEnroe won 18-16. The tie-break was a fixture on many TV sets whenever there was a rain delay at Wimbledon.

Ivanisevic vs Rafter, 2001: 

Goran Ivanisevic, an unseeded player, took on Patrick Rafter (No. 3 seed) in a final filled with emotions. After three rain-interrupted days, Ivanisevic emerged triumphant in a five-set battle, winning 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 2-6, 9-7. This victory marked Ivanisevic’s first and only Wimbledon championship. This was by far my favorite Wimbledon final of all time. Ivanisevic had experienced heartbreak in three previous finals. He would not be denied on his fourth. 

Williams vs. Sharapova, 2004: 

In a clash of powerhouses, Serena Williams (No. 1 seed) faced Maria Sharapova (No. 13 seed). This tournament was Sharapova’s coming out party, blasting her way through Serena Williams, and easily beating her 6-1, 6-4. At 17, Sharapova would win her first of five Grand Slams to her name. Although dominating Serena in this final, the rest of the rivalry would not be a rivalry at all, Serena would dominate the rivalry 20-2. 

Navratilova vs Garrison, 1990: 

Martina Navratilova (No. 3 seed) battled Zina Garrison (No. 5 seed) in an all-American final. Navratilova demonstrated her prowess, defeating Garrison 6-4, 6-1. This win secured Navratilova’s ninth Wimbledon singles title, cementing her status as one of the greatest players in the history of the tournament. This final is noteworthy because it marked the last Grand Slam title Navratilova would ever win.

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