SPORTS After World Cup, MLS looks Special K: 2nd Wimbledon to steady growth title for Petra Kvitova
Even before millions of people packed into outdoor fan parties, ran out to bars for long lunches and sneaked peeks of games at their offices during the Americans’ World Cup run, Major League Soccer began thinking about how to convert some of those fans into supporters for its own teams.
Playing its 19th season and preparing for an expansion to 24 teams in its post-David Beckham era, MLS has grown in support and interest but remains a feeder league — with most young star players it produces leaving for more lucrative contracts in Europe.
MLS Commissioner Don Garber wants to change that quickly, and it only helps his cause when stars such as Clint Dempsey and Michael Bradley come home to play on U.S. soil.
“We want to be thought of the way the Premier League is thought of, Serie A is thought of, La Liga is thought of, the Bundesliga is thought of,” Garber said. “When people think about the best leagues in the world, everybody knows who they are, and we want to be one of those leagues.”
LONDON (AP) — Petra Kvitova plays so much better at the All England Club than anywhere else, and now she owns two championships to prove it.
In one of the most dominant performances in a women’s final at Wimbledon, the sixth-seeded Kvitova of the Czech Republic overpowered and overwhelmed 13th-seeded Eugenie Bouchard of Canada 6-3, 6-0 in only 55 minutes Saturday to add to her 2011 title at the grass-court Grand Slam. “I know,” Kvitova said, “this is the best tournament for me.” Absolutely true. Her career record of 26-5 at Wimbledon translates to an .839 winning percentage, compared to her marks of .667 at the three other majors and .681 at all other events.
In 2014, Kvitova lost in the first round at the hard-court Australian Open, and in the third round at the clay-court French Open. But get her on the grass court, and those speedy serves and flat forehands really shine.
“For sure, she was on,” Bouchard said. “We know that when she’s on, she’s very tough to beat. Especially on this surface.”