Errani & Vinci Complete Grand Slam Set
Published July 05, 2014 12:13
In their four years together, Errani and Vinci will have played few better matches, dominating from start to finish and completing a 6-1, 6-3 triumph after only 56 minutes.
"It's unbelievable. I mean, we have no words to tell you what this means for us," Errani said. "Of course, we were thinking about this. We were thinking about it all day, all through the morning. I think we played perfectly - it's very special."
Prior to this visit, the Italians had never been beyond the quarterfinals at the All-England Club, and they very nearly came unstuck early on in the fortnight, saving six match points in their second round win over Lyudmyla and Nadiia Kichenok. This scare only succeeded in galvanizing the No.2 seeds, who would drop only one more set.
Unfortunately for Babos and Mladenovic, they saved their best for last. They made the perfect start to the final, breaking Babos in the very first game to establish an advantage that they rarely looked like relinquishing. After wrapping up the first set in under half an hour, Errani and Vinci encountered more resistance in the second, but there was a sense of inevitability about the outcome.
The crucial moment came in the sixth game, when Mladenovic double faulted to hand over the break. Three games later it was all over, Vinci calmly serving out to complete a historic win.
Errani and Vinci, who won the French and US Opens in 2012 before taking the Australian Open title earlier this year, are the first team to complete the career Slam since Venus and Serena Williams in 2001. The only other partnerships to achieve the feat are Martina Navratilova and Pam Shriver, Gigi Fernández and Natasha Zvereva, and Kathy Jordan and Anne Smith.
"We always say that it's because we are friends outside the court," Errani said when asked about the secret behind their success. "We are like a big team, spending a lot of time all together with our families and our coaches. We are really a big team. Not only for doubles, but also when we are playing singles.
"I think this is very important. We know how to help the other and we know each other. This is also important when you go on the court, but also I think we both play very good tennis and this helps, of course!"