Muguruza hopes Wimbledon glory won't backfire
LONDON, JULY 16: Garbine Muguruza hopes the legacy of her first Wimbledon title will not be a depressing repeat of the torment she suffered after her 2016 French Open breakthrough.
The 23-year-old Spaniard stunned sentimental favourite Venus Williams 7-5, 6-0 on Saturday to clinch her second Grand Slam crown.
She immediately turned her thoughts to the future, hoping her triumph will be a launchpad for more majors rather than a one-way ticket into the abyss.
When she defeated Serena Williams to win Roland Garros last year, it was revenge for her loss to the American in the Wimbledon final 12 months earlier.
But instead of having the world at her feet, the burden of being a Grand Slam champion was too much.
She lost in the second round at Wimbledon last year to world number 124 Jana Cepelkova and crashed out at the same stage of the US Open to Anastasija Sevastova, ranked 48 at the time.
Muguruza made the quarter-finals of the Australian Open this year, but her Roland Garros title defence ended at the last-16 stage in tears and a bitter outburst at the Paris crowd.
"It's not easy. It's very good when you win it, and it's hard after when you come back and you know you have to defend," said Muguruza.
"But that's a good problem to have. It was tough obviously, because you know you have a lot of matches to go.
"I'm happy to be in this situation. I'm happy that once again I see myself winning a Grand Slam, something that is so hard to do. It means a lot.
Muguruza's title triumph on Saturday was her first of any kind since the 2016 French Open.
Two of her four career titles have now come at the majors.
When Muguruza lost in the first round at the Eastbourne grass-court event on the eve of Wimbledon, it looked like she was suffering another Paris hangover.
But with memories of her post-Roland Garros problems still fresh, she said she was determined to put the record straight.
She proved as good as her word, knocking out top seed Angelique Kerber, from a set down, and seventh-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova on her way to the final.
"Eastbourne was such a short tournament, I didn't play well there. But I did the week before in Birmingham (where she made the semi-finals), so that helped me," she said.
"I always come very motivated to the Grand Slams. Since I lost the final here I wanted to change that. �AFP