How Roberta Vinci and her sliced backhand caused one of the biggest upsets in US Open history!

The expectation is always on Serena Williams. Win after win and title after title the whispers began, could Serena become the first player since Steffi Graf in 1988 to complete the calendar Grand Slam.

The final four in 2015 were world number one Serena Williams, Roberta Vinci, Flavia Pennetta and world number two Simona Halep.

None of the other three had a won a Grand Slam title, Halep had been to the final of Roland Garros in 2015 but no one expected the two Italian to proceed to the final.

Serena did take around 15 minutes to get going and found her range from an early break down.

From 1-2 down Serena went onto win the first set 6-2 but the signs were there from Vinci who used her forehand well and that slice was problematic.

Serena recovered from 0-40 in her first game of the second set but the alarm bells were getting noisier in the opening few games.

The power Serena possesses was an in issue in the match but Vinci began to slice more and come to the net, giving Serena nothing to work with.

Before I come onto that one of the shots in Vinci’s armour that stood strong was her forehand.

You can see Vinci is getting ready to go for the forehand and find her angle, playing into space all the time she was able to rev up into the shot.

Roberta did this incredibly well throughout the final two sets and it kept Serena guessing and on the defensive but to get to this shot came the sliced backhand and it caused havoc.

There were many moments at the end of the second set and the entire third set where Vinci would continue to go to this shot.

This was from set point in the second set which Vinci won. She sets out her intentions to play that sliced backhand as you can see in the first pic and I’ve highlight where it will drop!

The backhand now from Serena is difficult and different to usual. You can see her back is bent as she’s now trying to dig it out.

The ball is dropped low from Vinci and it gave Serena nothing to work with at all and had to try and use the low ball with no interest on to try and create an opening but it was difficult.

Vinci stepped up and put it away and went onto win 2-6 6-4 6-4 in what was one of the greatest upsets in US Open history a year which saw Flavia Pennetta defeat Vinci to win her Grand Slam title.


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