The 2016 Wimbledon final pits a dominant server in Serena Williams against a dynamic returner in Angelique Kerber.
No. 1-seed Serena Williams will take on No. 4-seed Angelique Kerber in the 2016 Wimbledon finals on Saturday. Serena leads their head-to-head 5-2 but lost their last meeting, the 2016 Australian Open final. Serena played a near flawless match in the semifinals against Elena Vesnina and that level of play is unbeatable. The challenge for Kerber is to put pressure on Serena early in the match and get her out of her comfort zone. Kerber’s aim should be to stay close to Serena and hope the pressure of the situation causes her to make errors and miss serves.
Here's a look at the stats from the 2016 Australian Open final looking at the set Serena won and the sets she lost:
Sets Won Sets Lost
1st Serves in Play 64% 49%
1st Serve Points Won 78% 64%
2nd Serve Points Won 60% 37%
Total Unforced Errors 5 41
Serena's 1st serve percentage in play fell to just 49% in the two sets she lost to Kerber and her winning percentage on 2nd serves fell as Kerber got many more looks at Serena's 2nd serve. And Serena's unforced errors skyrocketed.
Kerber's return of serve has been her strength throughout the fortnight. If Williams has any issues with her serve Kerber will be ready to apply the pressure. But as Vesnina found out in the semifinals, if you can't touch it you can't return it.
Serena’s Wimbledon highlights:
• Dominating 1st serve: 61 aces, 41% serves not returned, 81% 1st serve points won, top speed 123 mph
• Very strong return game: 65% won returning 2nd serves, has 27 return winners in 6 matches
• Big forehand: 66 forehand winners, 36 backhand winners, won 56% of her baseline points
Kerber’s Wimbledon highlights:
• Very solid serving: 68% 1st serves in play, 70% 1st serves won, 54% 2nd serves won (she lost 3 of her first 4 service games against Venus Williams in the semis and then held 6 straight losing only 7 points in those 6 games)
• Dominating return game: 85% hit back in play, 43% won vs. 1st serves, 62% won vs. 2nd serves, 28 breaks in 55 return games played (51%)
• Consistent baseline game: 57 forehand winners, 34 backhand winners, won 54% of her baseline points
Check SI.com's Wimbledon 2016 Daily Data Viz hub page throughout the whole tournament for the latest data-driven infographics and charts from IBM, the official technology partner for Wimbledon. IBM captures and analyzes the data that powers all of the Grand Slams, as well as the digital platforms that extend the experience to fans around the world.