Serena Williams completed her comeback from serious health problems by winning her fifth Wimbledon and 14th Grand Slam singles title Saturday.
Williams, a two-time Olympic doubles gold medalist and a nominee for the London 2012 Olympic Games, won her first Grand Slam since being sidelined early in 2011 by the combination of foot surgeries, a blood clot and pulmonary embolism.
After beating Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska, 6-1, 5-7, 6-2, Serena joined sister Venus Williams to take the doubles title later in the day.
July 2, 2012
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Paralympic Qualifiers Since July 2, 2012
“I was definitely inspired by Serena’s singles performance,” Venus told the Associated Press after the 7-5, 6-4 doubles final win over Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka of the Czech Republic. “Obviously it’s wonderful to play on the court with her.”
After letting a 4-2 lead get away in the second set of the women’s singles final, Serena recovered to take charge of the third set with four straight aces for a 4-2 lead. She finished with a Wimbledon record 102 aces.
The Williams sisters closed out their sixth Wimbledon doubles championship less than 15 minutes before the Centre Court curfew that would have forced them to finish the match Sunday. Together, the Williams sisters won the gold medal in Sydney in 2000 and in Beijing in 2008.
Serena and Venus Williams both qualified to compete in London, pending approval from the U.S. Olympic Committee. The USOC plans to announce its London nominees on July 10.
Olympic tennis competition will take place at London’s All England Club beginning July 28, and much preparation has gone into making sure the grass courts at Wimbledon will return to their famous pristine condition for the Games.
The United States posted its best men’s finish since its 2008 Olympic gold medal when it took the silver medal in the FIVB World League Sunday after losing to Poland 25-17, 26-24, 25-20 in the championship match.
The United States went 2-2 in the final round to finish 11-5 overall in the league.
Clay Stanley was named Best Server of the final round with nine aces, including three Sunday. He was also second among final round scorers with 62 points on 49 attacks, four blocks and nine aces.
“In the beginning of the World League, I didn’t think we’d be in this position,” Stanley said. “I thought our team improved each weekend. We did a lot of great things to get to this final, although I’m disappointed in how we showed up to play tonight.”
Stanley had 12 attacks and three aces in the final. Matt Anderson added six kills and two blocks.
The United States reached the final by beating Bulgaria, 25-21, 25-16, 25-17, Friday and Cuba, 25-23, 25-22, 25-23, Saturday.
Elsewhere, the United States rallied to defeat Puerto Rico, 22-25, 25-19, 25-11, 26-28, 15-7, for the bronze medal of the NORCECA Boys’ Youth Continental Championship Saturday in Tijuana, Mexico. The United States went 4-2 in the tournament, including a 22-25, 26-25, 26-24, 25-19 loss to Cuba in the semifinals.
U.S. Olympic Team nominees swept the titles at the FIVB Swatch World Tour 1-1 Energy Grand Slam in Gstaad, Switzerland.
The men’s team of Jake Gibb and Sean Rosenthal won its second straight World Tour event with a 21-17, 21-17 victory over Brazil’s Alison Cerutti and Emanuel Rego Sunday.
Two-time Olympic champions Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh won the women’s title Saturday, taking their first World Tour title of the season in their final tune-up before London.
Gibb and Rosenthal advanced to the final with a win over another U.S. Olympic team combination, Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers, 21-10, 21-18.
“It was an amazing tournament for us once again,” Gibb said. “It is an honor to play and rewarding to defeat a team like Alison and Emanuel, who are the top team in the world.
“Sean and I have been playing together for seven years and to beat the reigning world champions in two straight gold medal matches is unbelievable.”
Dalhausser and Rogers lost to Italy’s Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai, 21-19, 21-18, in the bronze-medal match.
May-Treanor and Walsh defeated Sanne Keizer and Marleen Van Iersel from the Netherlands, 21-10, 21-13.
“It has been my very last world tour event here as a player,” May-Treanor said. “It is so wonderful up here. I will come back in the crowd next time, cheering for Kerri.”
Jennifer Kessy and April Ross, who qualified to compete in London, finished fifth.
LeBron James has his first National Basketball Association championship. Now he will go after a second Olympic gold medal.
James, who earned the NBA’s Most Valuable Player award on the way to leading the Miami Heat to the 2012 title, was among the 12 players announced as official nominees to the U.S. Olympic men’s basketball roster Saturday. Nominees in all sports are pending final approval by the U.S. Olympic Committee, which takes place Tuesday.
James, who helped lead the “Redeem Team” to the gold medal four years ago in Beijing, now has a shot at gold again in London.
“It’s very possible,” James said. “I’m looking forward to it. That’s what I expect, and that’s what I want. I’m a competitor and I always want to win.”
James is one of five members from the U.S. team in Beijing who are on the roster for the London 2012 Olympic Games. Carmelo Anthony, Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul and Deron Williams are the others.
The squad also includes five members of the 2010 World Championship gold-medal team: Tyson Chandler, Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala, Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook. Blake Griffin and James Harden are the newcomers to the team.
The team was selected from a group of 15 candidates at the Men’s National Team training and Olympic selection camp, which runs through Thursday in Las Vegas. The team then will head to Washington, D.C., and will face Brazil in an exhibition game July 16. The U.S. women’s team also will face Brazil the same day in the Verizon Center.
Read more coverage of the men’s basketball team roster announcement here.
Elsewhere, the United States won the FIBA U-17 World Championship for men’s basketball in Kaunas, Lithuania, with three medal-round routs to finish 8-0. Conner Frankamp scored 22 points in Sunday’s 95-62 championship game rout of Australia.
Jahlil Okafor added 17 points while Justise Winslow had 13 points and 11 rebounds.
Winslow had 17 points, 13 rebounds, three assists and two blocked shots in Saturday’s 95-66 romp over Spain.
The United States routed Canada, 113-59, in the quarterfinals.
Four U.S. Olympians shined Saturday and Sunday at the USA Cycling Mountain Bike Cross Country National Championships in Ketchum, Idaho.
Sam Schultz pulled away from Olympic teammate Todd Wells when Wells got a flat on the sixth and final lap to win the 34.8-kilometer professional men’s cross country title Saturday.
“We just kept going back and forth before he got a flat,” Schultz said.
Georgia Gould won the professional women’s cross country race for her fourth national title. Gould and Olympic teammate Lea Davison finished 1-2.
Cameron Chambers and India Wysong won the Singlespeed race. The Olympians reversed roles on Sunday. Wells came back Sunday to win the short track cross country title. Davison edged Gould by one second in the women’s short track race.
Adam Craig and Kelli Emmett won Pro Women’s Super D titles.
• Jarrod Shoemaker placed third and Manuel Huerta was fifth in the men’s race while Lindsey Jerdonek was eighth among the women at the ITU Triathlon World Cup event in Edmonton, Canada.
• Kelly Rulon scored three goals as the U.S. women’s water polo team defeated Hungary, 9-4, Sunday in Newport Beach, Calif., to complete a four-game sweep of the series between the two teams in the final tune-up for the London 2012 Olympic Games. The United States also won, 7-6, Friday in San Diego.
• Keilani Ricketts struck out three while not allowing a hit over the final 3 2/3 innings and Stacy May-Johnson drove in both runs Sunday when the United States shut out Australia 2-0 in the semifinals of the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship. The United States and Japan play for the title tonight in Surrey, British Columbia. The United States finished round-robin play at 6-0 by beating New Zealand, 7-0, Friday then topping Canada, 14-2, and Japan, 14-3, Saturday.
• Kalon Ludvigson won his seventh consecutive U.S. men’s tumbling title on the final day of the U.S. Elite Championships for trampoline and tumbling Saturday in Long Beach, Calif. Marina Moskalenko won the women’s tumbling championship. Austin White and Erin Jauch won the senior men’s and women’s double mini-trampoline titles.
• Rachael Heiden and Brian Burrows made up for finishing just short a year ago by capturing men’s and women’s trap titles at the USA Shooting National Championships for Shotgun in Colorado Springs. Both entered the finals with the lead last year before Heiden slipped to finish third and Burrows placed second. Heiden won her second national title.
• Cuba defeated the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team three times by a total of four runs Friday, Saturday and Sunday in Havana. The Collegiate National Team won the first game of the five-game series, which concludes tonight.
• After allowing only three goals total in six straight wins, the U.S. women fell to Canada, 4-2, in the final of the FIRS Inline Hockey World Championships in Bucaramanga, Colombia.
• The Central Park Track Club from New York won the USATF National Club Track & Field Championships in Omaha. Central Park won its third straight women’s title behind 43 points by Most Valuable Female Athlete Heather Miller. The men won for the second time in three years with help from Rolston Braithwaite, the Most Valuable Male Athlete.
• The USA Fencing National Championships came to a close in Anaheim, Calif. Among the titles decided during the weekend were U-19 individual championships for Eli Dershwitz in men’s saber, Madison Zeiss in women’s foil, Brian Ro in men’s epee and Celina Merza in women’s saber.
Story courtesy of Red Line Editorial, Inc. Tom Robinson is a freelance contributor for TeamUSA.org. Material from various news services and press releases from National Governing Bodies was used to compile this report. This story was not subject to the approval of any National Governing Bodies.