Thursday, 19 July, 2018

Serena survives scare to make 11th Wimbledon semi-final

Djokovic won the last of his Wimbledon titles in 2015 Djokovic won the last of his Wimbledon titles in 2015
Cassandra Gardner | 14 July, 2018, 05:16

The former world number one was taken to three sets for the first time in the tournament by Camila Giorgi in her quarter-final match, but remains the title favourite.

The 36-year-old Williams was absent from the All England Club in 2017 due to her pregnancy, and played her first Grand Slam since giving birth at the French Open last month when she reached fourth round.

Goerges came back in her match, too, defeating Kiki Bertens 3-6 7-5 6-1 in her first grand slam quarterfinal at about the same time Williams' match ended.

Williams took control of the third and final set in the the third game, claiming the third break of the match, and with the remaining games all going to serve, served out for a 3-6, 6-3 6-4 win.

"I knew I had to be aggressive otherwise she would have opportunity for winners so I just went for my shots", Ostapenko said.

Serena is the first woman to reach a Grand Slam semi-final without facing a top 40 ranked opponent since 2013 and just the fourth since 2005.

Serena Williams continues to close in on a record-equalling 24th grand slam singles crown after advancing to her 11th Wimbledon semifinal.

Asked before the match what she made of Serena's form, Giorgi had replied: "I don't know, I don't follow women's tennis".

"I feel good, I felt like I did better today, I had to, but this is only my fourth tournament back so I don't feel any pressure and have to win this", she said.

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Williams' latest match required only 62 minutes and was not much of a contest, a 6-2, 6-2 win in which she compiled a 30-5 edge in winners against Evgeniya Rodina, a qualifier from Russian Federation ranked 120th who was dealing with a bothersome left thigh.

She served for the victory at 5-4 in the second set, but got broken.

Goerges and Kerber have already accomplished something not seen at Wimbledon since 1931 by putting two Germans in the women's semifinals. Kerber served for the victory at 5-4 in the second set, but got broken. "It's been a while since I've won a championship", Williams said.

"I'm just here just to be here, and to prove that I'm back", Williams added.

There were many of them - not least her mighty serve. From then on, the result felt inevitable as she served beautifully, levelling the match and then, after a stunning backhand to break for 2-1 in the decider, she eased through the set, serving out to love to take her place in the last four.

"I have a long way to go".

Serena Williams shrugged off the toughest test of her Wimbledon comeback after battling through to the semi-finals.

Considering what she went through during a traumatic labour nine months ago, since when she has played only a handful of matches, Williams's physical condition has been impressive. Sometimes I feel I can fight. Kerber, a two-time Grand Slam champion who was runner-up at Wimbledon in 2016, will be playing former French Open victor Jelena Ostapenko on Thursday. Williams leads 5-2 and will look to break Goerges to seal the match.

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