Times have changed, opponents have come and gone, and Serena Williams keeps vying for Grand Slam titles.
This semi-final was billed as attack versus defence and it was the solid, reliable manner of Kerber that prevailed as she let an erratic Ostapenko, who was going for winners on nearly every shot, hand her a swathe of free points.
"Honestly, I'm just me".
'She's always going out there to win the matches, ' the German said. She's been excellent this Wimbledon, although it wasn't easy late against the stubborn Ostapenko.
"Pregnancy will not be penalized", USTA spokesman Chris Widmaier said last month.
Serena Williams celebrates after winning against Italy's Camila Giorgi during their women's singles quarter-final match on the eighth day of the 2018 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, London, July 10, 2018.
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Well, it looks like the USTA won't have to worry about it. "I couldn't even walk to my mail box, so for me to back in a Wimbledon final isn't normal nor is it inevitable".
When Williams left the game soon after claiming her 23rd Grand Slam at the 2017 Australian Open, it appeared her streak might be under threat.
Kerber, in contrast, bides her time, working the back of the court to get everything back over the net, often kneeling to get low enough to reach shots.
All of the time away pushed someone who's spent more than 300 weeks ranked No. 1 down the rankings - she began Wimbledon at 181st, but was seeded 25th on account of her past success - and no one could quite be sure how the American would fare over these two weeks. Or, more to the point on this afternoon, how such a stinging serve and big groundstrokes didn't help her avoid first-round exits each of the past five years at Wimbledon. On the way to the last-four, she's dropped one set - against Camila Giorgi - in the quarterfinal.
Williams whose daughter Olympia was delivered by an emergency caesarean section on September 1, will play in the final, two months after taking a front row seat at Meghan's wedding in Windsor. A break and a consolidation gave Williams another 5-2 lead.
If she beats Kerber on Saturday, Williams, who first won Wimbledon in 2002, will become the first mother to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish since Goolagong 38 years ago. The first of the ladies' semifinals was all about the former finalist Kerber's serving power, which was up at 87 per cent for most of the match, but sunk to (77 per cent 49/64) by the end of the clash.