Serena battles into 11th Wimbledon semi

Grant SmithJul 14, 2018

"I'm happy to be in the second week, quarter-finals and now the semi-finals".

Williams was in danger of a stunning quarterfinal exit after world No. 52 Camila Giorgi became the first player in this year's tournament to take a set off the former world No. 1.

Up next for the 23-time Grand Slam victor is German 13th seed Julia Goerges, who also overcame an early blip in her quarter-final match to defeat close friend Kiki Bertens 3-6 7-5 6-1.

Angelique Kerber clinched her third appearance in the Wimbledon semi-finals with a 6-3, 7-5 win over Russian 14th seed Daria Kasatkina.

Ostapenko, who has yet to drop a set in the tournament, clinched the set in 56 minutes then took half that time to win the second as Sasnovich's game deserted her.

Both players held serve to send the first set to a tiebreak. "Since I started to play tennis, I always had this opportunity to hit the ball pretty hard", Ostapenko said.

While the 2016 finalist could not serve out for the match, she regained the initiative with another break before finally booking her place in Thursday's semi-finals with her seventh match point.

Having lifted the title in the last two years she played here, in 2015 and 2016, this quarter-final success takes Williams' winning streak at the All England Club to 19 matches.

Kerber and Ostapenko have never clashed before but the showdown ensures a grand slam champion will make the final. That's a decision that should please Djokovic, who told Serbian media on Monday that he was unhappy about playing all but one of his matches this year away from Centre Court.

"I don't want to talk about it because I would get really upset and angry about that, because it was ridiculous what happened there", Cibulkova said.

Goerges' win kept alive the possibility of Wimbledon staging an all-German women's final on Saturday as twice major victor Angelique Kerber takes on Latvia's Jelena Ostapenko in the other semi. "She didn't let me play how I wanted", said Cibulkova, the world number 33.

That's exactly what she did, as she hit three winners to earning three match points. But I'm going to prepare well for it, going to be probably long rallies. I was just trying to stay focused on my serve.

Kasatkina was more competitive in the second set but Kerber broke to go 6-5 up, then served out the match.

For the first time in the Open era, not a single top 10 seed has made the quarter-finals at one of the four Grand Slams.Kerber beat Kasatkina on grass at Eastbourne two weeks ago and again she was in control, finishing off the first set easily before landing an early break in the second.

It seems unusual that this will be the first time she has come up against Angelique Kerber on the tour - as the German defeated another youngster in Daria Kasatkina.

She repeatedly went for winners on her service returns, a strategy that helped her break Cibulkova five times.

In the men's draw, defending champion Roger Federer eased into his 16th Wimbledon quarter-final with a 6-0, 7-5, 6-4 win over unseeded Adrian Mannarino of France.

"I don't think Kasatkina has been disciplined enough".

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