Saturday, July 13, 2013
Porsche Team Germany player reaches Grand Slam final for the first time
Sabine Lisicki going for the Wimbledon crown
Stuttgart. Sabine Lisicki has fulfilled a dream: the Porsche Team Germany player has reached the Wimbledon final after a thrilling and hard-fought 6-4, 2-6, 9-7 win against the Pole Agnieszka Radwanska. She is the first German to reach the final since Steffi Graf in 1999. The 23-year-old will now face Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli on Saturday for the title at the world’s most famous tournament.
“I was so tense and now I’m so overjoyed,” said Sabine Lisicki after the battle of nerves on Centre Court in London’s south-west. “There were lots of ups and downs. The match was so amazingly intensive but I fought with all my heart.”
Sabine Lisicki first stood in the semifinal of the legendary grass court tournament on the Church Road two years ago when she lost to the Porsche brand ambassador Maria Sharapova from Russia. Playing Agnieszka Radwanska, who is ranked 20 places above her at No. 4, the German, like in her sensational win against Serena Williams, was once again in a highly determined and confident mood and encountered far fewer problems at the start. She won the first set after losing her serve at 2-all. In the second nothing suddenly seemed to go right for the German. Sabine Lisicki appeared to be nervous and was unable to win a single service game – the two games she won were both breaks.
The tension was almost unbearable in the decisive third set. Sabine Lisicki again lost her first service game – the Pole quickly went 3-0 up. But the German did not give in and showed the fighting spirit with which she has turned around more than a few important matches in the past. She finally managed to hold serve and her confidence was back. The Berlin-born player, who lives in Bradenton/Florida, drew level and then served for the match at 5-4. However Agnieszka Radwanska, who one year ago beat Porsche Team Germany’s Angelique Kerber in the semifinal, broke back and then led – there is no tie break in the final set at Wimbledon – twice herself. The decisive break was then secured by Sabine Lisicki to put her 8-7 up. Three match points soon came her way on her serve. The Pole saved the first but then the Porsche Team Germany player converted the second after two hours 18 minutes to advance to her first ever Grand Slam final. She was given a standing ovation by the crowd for her fantastic performance.
“The crowd carried me to the win. It’s so nice playing here,” said Sabine Lisicki, who sat on the chair with tears of joy running down her cheeks after completing the biggest win in her career. But not only the fans had taken the friendly German to their hearts long before the semifinal. The British press has also been taken by the charm of the blonde German. “Sabine Lisicki is the fans’ darling,” proclaimed The Independent and the Daily Mirror wrote: “Her smile makes the tournament even more wonderful.” The experts are agreed she can go all the way this year. American Tracy Austin, four-time winner of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix and now a commentator for the ESPN sports channe, is convinced, “Sabine has the maturity and coolness to finish the job.”
Her opponent in the final on Saturday is Marion Bartoli. The Frenchwoman, the current world No. 15, stood in the 2007 Wimbledon final. The two have played each other four times – the Berlin-born player has won on three occasions. However she was not thinking so far ahead in the hour of her biggest triumph. “All I’m going to do is enjoy the moment today,” she said, “and from tomorrow I’ll be concentrating on the final.”
Please note: the Porsche Team Germany and Porsche Talent Team Germany photo libraries, a part of the Porsche Press Data Bank, is available to all accredited journalists at the internet addresshttp://presse.porsche.de.
SOURCE: Porsche Motorsports Press Release Database