Published August 04, 2012
Centre Court at Wimbledon is used to hosting just one major tennis event per year, but the 2012 Olympics setting up shop in London meant the All England Club would be pressed into service twice in 2012. The women — for once, they're women and not ladies at Wimbledon — will play first, with Russia's Maria Sharapova running into the red-hot Serena Williams on Saturday in the women's singles gold medal final.
Sharapova has dropped just one set in Olympic play, but Williams has dropped just 16 games over the course of five matches, and she walloped world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka 6-1, 6-2 in a semifinal on Friday. Serena's also 8-2 all-time against Sharapova, and has won the last seven meetings.
With both women having won titles at all four majors, the winner of the match will become the second woman after Steffi Graf to win the career Grand Slam and add an Olympic gold medal, a feat known as the Golden Slam.
If Sharapova wins, she'll snatch the top spot of the WTA Tour rankings from Azarenka, who will meet Maria Kirilenko for bronze in a match on Court 1 beginning at 7 a.m. Eastern; if Williams wins, she'll become the first tennis player to win a career Grand Slam and both singles and doubles Olympic gold.
NBC will show the entirety of the women's gold medal single match live. Play begins at 9 a.m. Eastern.