WIMBLEDON, England – Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova were ready hours before the scheduled start of the Wimbledon women's doubles final, which was planned as the third match in the Central Court on Saturday.
After Simona Halep needed just 56 minutes to beat Serena Williams in the first match on the center court, it looked like they could arrive earlier than expected.
Then, the men's doubles final lasted four hours and 57 minutes. When it came to a fifth set, the tournament supervisors told Hsieh and Strycova that their match was being postponed.
"I felt good yesterday in my practice," Hsieh lamented.
"Me too," Strycova agreed.
They were rescheduled for Sunday night after the men's singles final, a place normally reserved for the mixed doubles final. The mixed doubles were, in turn, relegated to Court No. 1.
Once again, Hsieh and Strycova waited. The men's match, between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, lasted four hours and 55 minutes, with Djokovic beating Federer in the first series of playoffs in a singles match at Wimbledon.
Hsieh faced the Sunday wait nervously eating: bananas, chocolate cookies, two potatoes, a plate of vegetables.
"I was eating all the time," said Strycova of Hsieh.
Hsieh said she was "happy that Wimbledon changed the rules" and brought a definitive playoff game, 12-12, to this year's tournament.
"Otherwise I will continue to eat and get fat," he said.
Hsieh and Strycova, both strong singles players, were the first Wimbledon pair to not lose a set on the way to the women's doubles title since Venus and Serena Williams did it 10 years ago.
Although his time was impeccable, and his victory by 6-2, 6-4 over Gabriela Dabrowski and Xu Yifan was efficient, on Sunday they were still late in the ball: the ball of champions, that is, to which the guests had already started. to arrive while the doubles champions were still in place.
Normally players choose their formal suits for the evening after winning a title; Strycova and Hsieh made sure to get theirs in the morning.
Strycova said she made her choice with the consultation of "a little helper": Halep, the champion of single women, who was also there to choose her dress on Sunday morning.
For Hsieh, the process was easy. "You know girls love pink dresses," he said.
Strycova will equip her look with a new crown: the WTA No. 1 ranking in doubles, which she achieved with the victory, culminating in a race redefinition tournament that also took her to her first singles semifinal. She called it "two weeks of incredible moments that I will never forget".
Strycova said reaching the top spot in the doubles clbadification had been a "great goal" since the start of the season.
"Especially here at this moment, this tournament, my favorite place, yes, it's a fairy tale," said Strycova.
Appropriately, that fairy tale now ends in the dance. At midnight, instead of a pumpkin, she will become the best official player in women's doubles.