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Moment of pure excitement: Ash after entering Wimbledon final

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London, July 9 (IANS) World No. 1 women’s tennis player, Ashleigh Barty said it was a moment of “pure excitement” and that she never knew she would experience something like this after the Australian reached her maiden Wimbledon final here, defeating Germany’s Angelique Kerber in straight sets.

“Yeah, it was incredible. It was just almost a moment of relief, a moment of pure excitement. It was something that I’d never, never knew if I would feel. I think being able to have an opportunity to play in a final here at Wimbledon is incredible,” said Ashleigh, who will take on Czech Republic’s Karolina Pliskova in the summit clash.

Ashleigh and Angelique had not played since 2018, with all four previous meetings taking place on hard courts in either Australia (both won by Angelique) or China (both won by Ashleigh). Their first encounter on grass, particularly with such high stakes, was a battle of both tactics and execution.

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“I think any match in a Grand Slam semifinal, it’s going to have to be a very good level,” Angelique said. “It’s no mistake that people keep working their way through the tournament. The latter stages of the tournament, you understand it’s going to be a really tough match regardless of who you’re playing and their experience level,” Ashleigh told wtatennis.com on Thursday.

Ashleigh, the 2019 French Open champion, added that she knew she would have to play her best tennis to beat Angelique, the 2018 Wimbledon champion.

“I think for me today it was about knowing that I could draw on my experiences from my two previous semis, and I think I was able to do that. But Angie is an incredible competitor. She’s a great champion. I knew that I had to bring my very best level today to match it with her.”

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Angelique came into the match with the edge in both experience, having won Wimbledon in 2018 and been runner-up in 2016, and form. The German was on a nine-match winning streak, the third-longest of her career, after breaking a three-year title drought in Bad Homburg a fortnight ago.

“She is really intelligent player and she knows how to play also with her slice, and then she’s going forward with her forehand,” Angelique said afterward.

“She really served well today. You see that she has a lot of confidence, that she played a lot of big matches, that she’s the No.1 player in the world right now. But for me it was important to give everything I had on court. Yeah, like I said, she had always, like in the important moment, the better answer,” added Angelique.

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–IANS

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