After all the Wimbledon semi-final matches were complete and I contemplated the two mornings of Breakfast at Wimbledon on tap for the weekend I was hopeful that the Williams sisters would give us a good if not great finals match.
Well they didn't and more often than not that seems to be the case when they play each other for a championship trophy. It is frustrating to watch, the paying customers are quiet and the contestants are tentative. They aren't even close to playing their best.
I've heard it said that we can't imagine how difficult it is to win one of sport's ultimate prizes but have to beat your best friend and family member to do it. And while I understand that affects both Serena and Venus I am moved to ask why they can't seem to get past it after all this time.
I don't know the answer but I, like many in the audience was left cold by the match that was blessedly short and I was unable to exult with Serena when it was complete.
On Sunday while watching Federer's historic 15th Grand Slam win, this time over Andy Roddick I saw a match that while tense was anything but uncomfortable. It was high-quality tennis, efficiently played and it kept you on edge wondering who would make the one mistake it would take to lose. Neither man wasted energy on emotional gyrations about missed calls or unlucky bounces that they smartly conserved for what amounted to more than six sets of tennis.
So it's not like I needed to see the electricity of a Rafa Nadal match to enjoy great tennis. In the Williams sisters match, points were short and intensity was virtually absent. If you thought it was because Venus was hurting, think again. Within hours the sisters played the women's doubles final and beat a great Aussie team in straight sets. They were gregarious as they usually are when they play doubles and looked happy to be on the court.
And that is what was truly missing from their singles match. You get the feeling that they'd rather be anywhere in the world other than Centre Court but if they want a trophy they've got to stay put. The match reminded me of a boxing match when the combatants are feeling out their opponent in the first round or so. That eventually ends and a real fight tends to break out. No such luck in this year's women's finals.
In the past, when the sisters have been placed on the same side of the draw, it hasn't gone down well with them or the tournament directors. Much hand-wringing goes on about them meeting in the quarter-finals or the semis.
Isn't it time for us to say that if they aren't going to go all out and feel comfortable to win in their typical fashion that we'd rather see one of them against another opponent? I guess I just did that.