Wimbledon: Maria joins the greats after reaching maiden grand slam quarter

By Sports Desk July 03, 2022

Surprise Wimbledon quarter-finalist Tatjana Maria joined an illustrious list of greats after defeating Jelena Ostapenko on Sunday.

Maria, a mother of two, returned from maternity leave under a year ago and came back from a set down to triumph 5-7 7-5 7-5 against the 2017 French Open champion. 

That sent the 34-year-old into the first grand slam quarter-final of her career.

With that achievement, the German matched a feat only six women had previously managed, as she became the seventh woman in the Open Era to reach the last eight of a major after turning 34.

World number 103 Maria, who salvaged two match points in the second set, joins the great Billie Jean King, Virginia Wade, Chris Evert, nine-time Wimbledon champion Martina Navratilova, Serena Williams and Venus Williams on that distinguished list.

Ostapenko was in a foul mood after seeing the match slip from her grasp, and received a frosty reception as she made her way off court.

It could take nothing away from a special day for Maria, who said in her on-court interview: "Oh my God, it makes me so proud to be a mum.

"That's the best thing in the world, I love to be a mum, I love my two kids. To be able to do this together, we practiced this morning with my daughter.

"Everybody has been so nice, supporting us and believing in me and our family, it makes it really special."

Next up for Maria is compatriot Jule Niemeier, who defeated Britain's Heather Watson in straight sets.

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