2017 midseason review: Garbiñe Muguruza

Wimbledon champion Garbiñe Muguruza has endured a tough 12 months since winning her first Grand Slam singles title at the French Open. Nonetheless, the 23-year-old added to her Grand Slam tally by winning Wimbledon for the first time.

2017 midseason review: Garbiñe Muguruza
The former world number two holds the Venus Rosewater Dish for the first time after defeating Venus Williams in the final (Photo by Shaun Botterill / Getty)

Since winning her first Grand Slam singles title at the French Open last year. Garbiñe Muguruza struggled to adapt to the pressures of becoming a Grand Slam champion. The Spaniard did not reach a single final, only 13 months later she achieved that. The former world number two advanced to her first final since winning the French Open in Paris, defeating Serena Williams. Muguruza created more tennis history as she became the first player to defeat both Williams sisters in a Grand Slam final as she defeated five-time champion Venus Williams to clinch a second Grand Slam title at Wimbledon.

Muguruza joins Victoria Azarenka, Angelique Kerber, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Petra Kvitova amongst the active players on the WTA tour who have managed to win two Grand Slam singles title. Only Serena Williams, Venus Williams and Maria Sharapova have claimed more. It will be interesting to see if Muguruza can kick on from winning Wimbledon, and this midseason review looks at her season to date.

Win/Loss

The two-time Grand Slam champion has a healthy 30-13 win-loss record in 2017. The Spaniard's results have improved immensely compared to this stage of last season.

High Points

The reigning Wimbledon champion had a great start to the 2017 campaign as she began her preparations for the Australian Open Down Under. She reached the semifinals in Brisbane but withdrew with an injury. Muguruza advanced to the quarterfinals at the Australian Open for the first time in her career but she was soundly beaten by Coco Vandeweghe. The world number five advanced to the quarterfinals at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells losing to world number one Karolina Pliskova. Moreover, the Spaniard advanced to the semifinals in Rome, where she defeated the likes of Jelena Ostapenko, Julia Goerges, and Venus Williams for the first time.

Muguruza reached her first hardcourt Grand Slam quarterfinal at the Australian Open back in January (Photo by Clive Brunskill / Getty)
Muguruza reached her first hardcourt Grand Slam quarterfinal at the Australian Open back in January (Photo by Clive Brunskill / Getty)

Unfortunately, she suffered her fourth retirement of the year in the semifinals to Elina Svitolina. Muguruza advanced to the semifinals of the Aegon Classic in Birmingham where she lost to Ash Barty. Her best result of the year was winning her second Grand Slam singles title at Wimbledon. The 23-year-old lost to Serena Williams in her first Grand Slam final two years ago. Nevertheless, the Spaniard only dropped one set throughout the tournament. She defeated three multiple Grand Slam champions in Angelique Kerber in the fourth round. Svetlana Kuznetsova in the quarterfinals and she crushed Venus Williams, 7-5, 6-0 to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish for the first time. The spark had returned in Muguruza's game, and at times last year, she cut a figure, who did not enjoy being on a tennis court.

Low Points

Muguruza struggled in the Middle Eastern swing as she lost to Zhang Shuai in the second round in Doha. She was forced to retire in her second round clash with Kateryna Bondarenko in Dubai. Moreover, the Spaniard's start to the clay court season was dismal. She lost to Anett Kontaveit and to two-time French Open semifinalist Timea Bacsinszky in Stuttgart and Madrid respectively. Muguruza was defending a Grand Slam singles title for the first time at the French Open. She dispatched the likes of 2010 winner Francesca Schiavone, Kontaveit, and Yulia Putintseva. However, her title defense came to a halt in the fourth round against Kristina Mladenovic in front of a Parisian crowd. Muguruza left Paris in tears but she was relieved to have the clay court season behind her. Just before Wimbledon began, the Spaniard was thrashed by 2014 quarterfinalist Barbora Strycova, 6-1, 6-0 in their second round clash in Eastbourne.

The pressure of being the French Open champion was evident over the past year for Muguruza (Photo by Clive Brunskill / Getty)
The pressure of being the French Open champion was evident over the past year for Muguruza (Photo by Clive Brunskill / Getty)

Best Results

The two-time Grand Slam champion was victorious at Wimbledon which is her standout result of the year. She advanced to the semifinals in Brisbane, Rome, and Birmingham. Muguruza was also a quarterfinalist at the Australian Open and Indian Wells. The Spaniard reached the fourth round in Miami and the French Open. The former world number two has recorded solid results in 2017 which she struggled to do last year.

Worst Results

Despite recording some good results in 2017, the former French Open champion has had a few stinkers. She suffered second round exits in Doha, Dubai, Stuttgart, and Eastbourne along with a first round loss at the Mutua Madrid Open.

Grade: A

The reigning Wimbledon champion seemed relaxed and she played fearless tennis at Wimbledon. Her compatriot and Fed Cup captain Conchita Martinez who won Wimbledon in 1994 stepped in as her coach throughout the fortnight. It was a fruitful partnership as the duo were having fun together. Nonetheless, the two-time Grand Slam champion will have a good chance of becoming the world number one this year.

Muguruza (left) posed with her second Grand Slam singles title after defeating Venus Williams (right) in the Wimbledon final (Photo by Shaun Botterill / Getty)
Muguruza (left) posed with her second Grand Slam singles title after defeating Venus Williams (right) in the Wimbledon final (Photo by Shaun Botterill / Getty)

Muguruza's confidence is back, and she looks incredibly happy to be playing matches on a tennis court. If she can remain consistent, and translate her high level of tennis at the Grand Slams to WTA tournaments, she could dominate women's tennis for the next few years. Muguruza is still only 23 and winning two Grand Slams already is a Hall of Fame career. The Spaniard still has a lot to improve on and her game is suited to all three surfaces, which makes her a nightmare to play against.

The two-time Grand Slam champion has one more hurdle to get over, and it is the US Open. Flushing Meadows remains to be the only Grand Slam, where she has failed to reach the second week of a Slam but she will be looking to set the record straight in New York.
 


 


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