In this article, we focus on Simona Halep’s Wimbledon victory against Serena Williams. The topic was approached through an online survey conducted on the questia.ro platform. The research study was active between July 17th and July 18th, 2019 and covered 1100 respondents, with a +/- 3% margin of error when reported to the Romanian online population.

How a Dream Led to Victory

July 14th, 2019 was a great day for Romanians. Just 4 days before celebrating 43 years since the first 10 in the history of gymnastics, achieved by Nadia Comăneci, Romanians were granted another moment of joy when Simona Halep won the 2019 Wimbledon tournament and the second Grand Slam of her life.

She won the title by defeating Serena Williams by 6-2, 6-2 in just 56 minutes. Looks like Simona knew what she wanted and she went straight for it. After this win, Simona ranked 4th in the WTA Single Rankings.

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The former number one took advantage of Serena’s early errors of not being able to send her shots over the net. The Guardian reports that Simona “played a near-flawless final on Saturday to become the first Romanian woman to win Wimbledon”.

Serena confessed that Simona “really played out of her mind. Whenever a player plays that amazing you just have to take your hat off and give her a nod.”

After her triumphant homecoming this week, Romanian Presidential Administration announced she will be decorated with the highest state distinction of the country, the Order of the Romanian Star (Steaua României). Moreover, the Orthodox Church awarded her with the Patriarchal Cross.

Simona, who worked very hard for this moment, said she played the "best match" of her life. "I came on court and gave my best. It's something very special, I will never forget this day." She also claimed that she attributes her victory to focus and self-belief.

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Let’s now check how our respondents feel about Simona being the first Romanian female to win Wimbledon.

Changing the Romanian Tennis for Good

Almost all our respondents (97.5%) believe that Simona deserved to win the 2019 Wimbledon title as she played better than Serena Williams. Moreover, her game was labeled as “flawless” by Eurosport and CNN. Furthermore, more than half of the respondents (66.7%) watch tennis tournaments only when Simona Halep is playing.

A little more than half of the respondents (52.1%) think that Simona deserves to be back at the top of the WTA (Women's Tennis Association) Ranking, while 2 out of 5 people think that she deserves to be the number 1 again if she will win the next games.

Regarding Simona’s coach, Daniel Dobre, people tend to think that he was a key factor in her victory as he helped her very much (68.3% of respondents believe so), while a little more than a quarter of respondents (27.7%) assign the merit only to Simona and her personal effort.

Next, we wanted to know how Simona is perceived by the Romanians in our online community. As it seems, more than three-quarters of respondents (78.3%) believe Simona Halep is a model of perseverance and talent for the young generation. Speaking of which, she inspires many children to pursue a career in tennis or to practice tennis as a hobby (10%). However, some think that Simona is just another professional athlete and not necessarily a Romanian social phenomenon (11.7%) .

We were then wondering what people appreciate the most at Simona. As it seems, more than three-quarters of respondents (76.1%) were mostly impressed by her courage, her perseverance for not giving up and keep fighting for her dream and her modest attitude towards all her accomplishments so far.

When respondents think of Simona, they associate her with devotion for tennis resembled through her hard work and effort (35%), determination (33%) and professionalism (24.1%). Moreover, more than one-quarter (27.3%) of respondents feel proud to be Romanians when thinking of Simona Halep.

We also added an event on our crowdsourced forecasting community for users to predict. They were asked to forecast whether Simona Halep will win the 2019 Wimbledon tournament by granting probabilities to each possible outcome. Our community predicted that in 7 out of 10 cases, Simona will win the 2019 Wimbledon title.

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