How did Hewitt do it?
Updated: July 8, 2002, 1:57 PM ETBy by Craig A. Rolling, STATS. Inc.
If you live in the United States and you slept in Sunday morning, you probably missed seeing Lleyton Hewitt win his first Wimbledon championship. In under two hours, the No. 1 ranked player in the world put an abrupt end to the Cinderella story of 28th-seeded David Nalbandian of Argentina, cruising to a 6-1, 6-3, 6-2 victory in the final. A fortnight that saw many of the top seeds bow out early did not faze the 21-year-old Hewitt, who won six of his seven matches in straight sets and improved his record to 119-25 (.826) since the start of 2001. Although he held the top ATP ranking going into the tournament, Hewitt's romp through Wimbledon was somewhat surprising because the Australian lacks the serve-and-volley game traditionally associated with grass-court success. Recent champions Pete Sampras, Richard Krajicek and Goran Ivanisevic all have possessed the booming serves and dexterity at net that are well-suited to lawn tennis. But like 1992 winner Andre Agassi, Hewitt was able to earn the sport's most prestigious trophy from the Centre Court baselines. So just how did he do it, and in such convincing fashion? The following chart tells the story.