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Spain's Rafael and US player Venus claim Wimbledon victories

July 6, 2008
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Sinking to the floor with a cry of victory, Rafael Nadal ended an epic Wimbledon final, finally securing the winning point that saw him through to victory. The determined Spaniard claimed his first Wimbledon title on Sunday from Swiss player and world number one Roger Federer, who had previously won at the All England Club for five years running.

Sports critics are hailing the match, which included two stops for rain and four hours fifty minutes of gripping play, as the greatest final in Grand Slam history. Two sets down, Roger made a valiant comeback, but was eventually overcome in a sensational fifth set.

An emotional and victorious Rafael vaulted onto the Centre Court roof to join his family in their seats, before stepping over to the royal box to be congratulated by Spain's Prince Felipe and his wife Princess Letizia.

The day before Venus Williams had lifted the trophy in the women's singles category, beating her sister Serena for the first time in the finale of the category at the All England Club. The US siblings had faced each other on two other occasions, in 2002 and 2003. "There were some really competitive and intense points," she said of the showdown with her younger sister this year. "We are both very powerful and it showed."

Venus was one of the guests of honour at a dinner held to fete the winners of the prestigious tennis championships on Sunday. The 28-year-old arrived wearing a gown in the traditional Wimbledon purple and a Ralph Lauren blazer with stripes in the same hue.

Also attending events to mark the final day of the competition were double Oscar winner Vanessa Redgrave, her actress daughter Joely Richardson, and Joely's teenage daughter Daisy.

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Photo: ©
The Spanish player sinks to his knees in disbelief after securing the point and winning his first ever final at the All England ClubPhoto: © Getty Imagesy
Photo: ©
Among the first to congratulate the new champion were Spain's Prince Felipe and his wife Princess LetiziaPhoto: © Getty Images
Photo: ©
Also victorious at the prestigious tennis championship, in the women's singles category, was Venus Williams. The US player was one of the guests at a dinner on Sunday to fete the winners of the competitionPhoto: © Getty Images

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