In a remarkable achievement, Marketa Vondrousova made history at Wimbledon by becoming the lowest-ranked and first unseeded woman to claim the title. The 24-year-old left-handed player from the Czech Republic, ranked 42nd in the world, defeated Ons Jabeur, the runner-up of 2022, with a score of 6-4, 6-4 in the final on Saturday.
Vondrousova’s journey to the final itself was notable as she became the first unseeded woman in 60 years to reach the championship match at the prestigious All England Club. The last unseeded finalist was Billie Jean King in 1963, who was present in the front row of the Royal Box during the final, alongside Kate, the Princess of Wales.
The retractable roof of the main stadium was closed, protecting the players from the strong wind that exceeded 20 mph (30 kph) outside. This favorable condition possibly contributed to Vondrousova’s impressive performance, as her smooth left-handed strokes consistently found their mark. In contrast, Jabeur seemed to struggle with tension, reflected in her shots.
Although Vondrousova faced deficits in both sets, she displayed tremendous resilience. She rallied to win the last four games of the first set and the last three games of the second, securing victory.
This remarkable achievement marks Vondrousova’s first Grand Slam title. As a teenager, she reached the final of the 2019 French Open but fell short. Following an injury that sidelined her from April to October, Vondrousova finished the 2022 season ranked 99th.
During the break between sets in the final, Jabeur briefly went to the locker room. Upon her return, she made an immediate error, and the crowd erupted in support. Another mistake from Jabeur granted Vondrousova a break point, which she capitalized on as Jabeur’s shot landed in the net. After just 45 minutes of play, Vondrousova led with a set and a break.