This Date in Wimbledon History: June 29
Every morning during Wimbledon, we'll take a look back at a memorable match that occurred on that calendar day at the All England Club.
June 29, 1977: Virginia Wade d. Chris Evert
Semifinals; 6-2, 4-6, 6-1
Evert had won 24 of her prior 28 meetings with Wade, who had never surpassed the semifinals at Wimbledon. But the third-seeded Briton beat sixth-seeded Rosie Casals in the quarterfinals and carried the confidence from that match into her duel with the defending champion.
Shrugging off her second-set loss, Wade continuously attacked the net behind penetrating approach shots, forcing Evert to try to create passing shots off sometimes unruly bounces behind the baseline. Nerves had plagued Wade in some of her past Wimbledon performances, but when her moment of truth arrived in the third set, she remained in command of both her emotions and the match.
"I've always felt there was this balance between tension and determination and so often you see the whole thing just gets too much not only for me, but for several players," Wade said. "The determination fades into the background. If you can keep the determination up at the top, then you can forget about the nerves."
One of the bigger servers of her era, Wade persistently pushed forward in the court, cut off the angles beautifully, and suffocated Evert in a dominant decisive set.
"I could see in her eyes how much she wanted to win," Evert said. "I just couldn't reach deep down inside myself for what I needed to win."
It was a monumental victory for Wade, who went on to defeat Betty Stove in the final, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1, to become the first British woman to win Wimbledon since Ann Jones in 1969.
June 25: Craybas stuns Serena (2005)
June 26: Rusedski falls to World's Biggest Loser (2000)
June 27: Zheng slays No. 1, reaches milestone (2008)
June 28: Henman's last hurrah (2007)
June 29: British Invasion: Wade beats Evert (1977)
June 30: Bjorn, Vitas collaborate on a classic (1977)
July 1: Tarango walks out (1995)
July 2: Borg fends off Connors in fifth set (1977)
July 3: Sharapova becomes a star (2004)
July 4: McEnroe finally beats Borg (1981)
July 5: Venus defeats, then defeats with, Serena (2008)
July 6: Rafter catches Agassi at the end (2001)
July 7: Becker becomes youngest champion (1985)
July 8: Mauresmo denies Henin Wimbledon (2006)