Better haircuts, wiser shots: Wimbledon veterans turn back Centre Court clock

Venus Williams lifted her first Rosewater Dish in 2000; Roger Federer won his first title in 2003. But it’s been a great year for both

Tony Blair, bright-eyed and puppy-eager, had not long strode into Downing Street when Venus Williams, her hair braided with purple and green beads, played her first match at Wimbledon. Princess Diana was still alive. There have been 10 changes of Italian prime minister in the Williams era. It is a measure of the 37-year-old American’s extraordinary longevity that three of her opponents in the past fortnight, all of whom she mercilessly thrashed, were actually born in the year of her debut: 1997.

But there was no fairytale ending yesterday under the Centre Court roof as Williams attempted to become the oldest women’s singles champion in Wimbledon history. The 23-year-old Spaniard Garbiñe Muguruza lived up to her hashtag nickname – Muguruthless – to win the final, comprehensively in the end, 7-5, 6-0.

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