Wimbledon 2012: The top 10 greatest Wimbledon finals ever - Mirror Online

Wimbledon 2012 That's ace! Top 10 greatest-ever Wimbledon finals

Tennis correspondent Neil McLeman picks his top ten classic finals from the All England Club

Bjorn again: Borg defeated John McEnroe in a classic Wimbledon final in 1980
Bjorn again: Borg defeated John McEnroe in a classic Wimbledon final in 1980
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Andy Murray has ended a 74-year Wimbledon final drought for Britain's men with his win over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Now six-time winner Roger Federer stands between him and glory on Centre Court on Sunday.

First Serena Williams takes on Agnieszka Radwanska in the women's final on Saturday afternoon.

But will either of this year's games live up to these classic Wimbledon finals...?

1. 2008 - Rafa Nadal v Roger Federer - 6-4 6-4 6-7 6-7 9-7

Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates after beating Roger Federer, 2008
Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates after beating Roger Federer, 2008
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The longest final in Wimbledon history was also the best. Twice interrupted by rain in the last final before the Centre Court roof, the epic clash between the top two in the world finished in the gathering gloom at 9.16am.

Nadal's victory, after four hours and 48 minutes, was also a symbolic victory as he won his first Grand Slam outside Roland Garros and ended Federer's run of five consecutive titles.

 

2. 1980 - Bjorn Borg beat John McEnroe - 1-6 7-5 6-3 6-7 8-6

Bjorn Borg sinks to his knees after defeating USA's John McEnroe , 1980
Bjorn Borg sinks to his knees after defeating USA's John McEnroe , 1980
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The ice-cool Swede won his fifth and final Wimbledon title but the young American won the most famous tiebreak of all time 16-14. Borg blew seven match points in the fourth set, including two in the tie break which last 22 minutes and 34 points.

But he fought back to beat his great rival. McEnroe won their re-match in the final the following year and he never appeared at Wimbledon again as the Swede retired in January 1983 at the age of 26.

           

3. 1977 - Virginia Wade beat Betty Stove - 4-6 6-3 6-1

Virginia Wade holding the trophy she won after defeating Holland's Betty Stove in the finals at Wimbledon. The trophy was presented by Queen Elizabeth II, 1977
Virginia Wade holding the trophy she won after defeating Holland's Betty Stove in the finals at Wimbledon. The trophy was presented by Queen Elizabeth II, 1977
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The last British singles success at Wimbledon came in a jubilee year back in 1977 when the Queen handed the Venus Rosewater dish to Virginia - and the Centre Court sang: 'For she's a jolly good fellow'.

It could have been a totally home affair but Holland's Stove beat Sue Barker in the other semi. But at her 16th attempt, Wade won Wimbledon wearing her pink cardigan

 

4. 1975 - Arthur Ashe beat Jimmy Connors  - 6-1 6-1 5-7 6-4

Arthur Ashe in action en route to beating fellow American Jimmy Connors, 1975
Arthur Ashe in action en route to beating fellow American Jimmy Connors, 1975
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An amazing sporting and socio-political story. A week before his 32nd birthday, African-American Ashe shocked the 7-1 on favourite Connors in a true grudge match.

Before the tournament, Connors announced he was suing Ashe for US$3m for libel over remarks over the younger man's boycott of the Davis Cup team. But in the final, Ashe frustrated and befuddled Connors with slice, spin and cunning.

 

5. 1990 - Martina Navratilova beat Zina Garrison - 6-4 6-1

Martina Navratilova of the USA holds the trophy, 1990
Martina Navratilova of the USA holds the trophy, 1990
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The Czech-born American was a woman on a mission as she set a new Wimbledon record of nine singles titles. The 33-year-old had lost the two previous finals to then world No 1 Steffi Graf and time was running out.

But Garrison beat the German in the other semi and Navratilova won the title without dropping a set in her seven matches - and only dropped 29 games. It was her 18th and final Grand Slam title.

 

6. 1985 - Boris Becker beat Kevin Curren - 6-3 6-7 7-6 6-4

Boris Becker beats Kevin Curren, 1985
Boris Becker beats Kevin Curren, 1985
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Becker became the first unseeded player and first German to win Wimbledon at the age of 17.

South African Curren had knocked out John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors on the way to the final but was over-powered by Becker. At the time, he was the youngest ever male Grand Slam singles champion at 17 years, 227 days and he went on to retain the title and win again in 1989 and lose four finals.

 

7. 1993 - Steffi Graf beat Jana Novotna - 7-6 1-6 6-4

Steffi Graf shows her fifth Wimbledon trophy 03 July 1993
Steffi Graf shows her fifth Wimbledon trophy 03 July 1993
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The brilliant German won her fourth Wimbledon title but this final will be remembered for Novotna's final set collapse - and breaking down in tears afterwards to be comforted by the Duchess of Kent.

The Czech led led 4-1 and 40-30 in the final set with the title a mere five points away. But she sent down a horrible double fault and 15 minutes and five games later, Graf was champion. Novotna lost again in the 1997 final to Martina Hingis but finally won the following year by beating Nathalie Tauziat of France

 

8. 1970 - Margaret Court beat Billie Jean King - 14-12 11-9

Margaret Court holds the Ladies Singles Plate after beating USA's Billie Jean-King, 1970
Margaret Court holds the Ladies Singles Plate after beating USA's Billie Jean-King, 1970
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In the days before tiebreakers, the then top two players took two-and-a-half hours to finish the first set - the longest ever in a Wimbledon singles finals. Court finally won the title on her seventh match point to complete the second leg of the single-season Grand Slam

 

9. 2001 - Goran Ivanisevic beat Pat Rafter - 6-3 3-6 6-3 2-6 9-7

Goran Ivanisevic is overcome with emotion after becoming the Mens Singles Champion, despite being a wild card entry, 2001
Goran Ivanisevic is overcome with emotion after becoming the Mens Singles Champion, despite being a wild card entry, 2001
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Entering on a wildcard, the Croat beat home hope Tim Henman in a three-day semi-final before facing the Aussie in the rain-delayed final.

Amid chaotic scenes on People's Monday, Ivanisevic finally won his fourth final in the fifth set to become of the most unlikely and popular winners in Wimbledon history.

 

10. 2007 - Jamie Murray and Jelena Jankovic beat Jonas Bjorkman and Alicia Molik - 6-4 3-6 6-1

Jamie Murray of Great Britain and Jelena Jankovic of Serbia celebrate after defeating Jonas Bjorkman of Sweden and Alicia Molik of Australia in mixed Doubles final, 2007
Jamie Murray of Great Britain and Jelena Jankovic of Serbia celebrate after defeating Jonas Bjorkman of Sweden and Alicia Molik of Australia in mixed Doubles final, 2007
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A Murray has already won a Wimbledon title. Five years ago, Jamie Murray and then world No 3 Jankovic won the mixed doubles final on Centre Court while his younger brother Andy too nervous to watch.

It is the last senior title won by a Briton at SW19.

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