Friday, 20 July, 2018

Williams back in Wimbledon semi-finals

Kiki Bertens celebrates victory against Venus Williams Kiki Bertens celebrates victory against Venus Williams
Rita Gibson | 11 July, 2018, 13:55

The issue: a pectoral injury that, at the time, left some doubts that she could play at Wimbledon.

Federer needed just 16 minutes to win the first set and the Swiss never looked back. Why not take a risk?

None of the top eight women's seeds have reached the quarter-finals for the first time since seedings were introduced in 1927 - although Williams' 25th seeding is misleading.

But the 29-year-old has erased those painful memories with a superb run, capped by a come from behind success against Bertens in her first Grand Slam quarter-final. "It's really hard to [compete] with a hero".

The way she is striking the ball and moving in her second Grand Slam back after childbirth she would arguably be favourite for the title even with the likes of Garbine Muguruza and Simona Halep still in contention.

World No 52 Giorgi blasted 20 winners and really took it to Williams, taking the first set thanks to one break, in the sixth game. Williams holds a 3-0 head-to-head record over Goerges, with the most recent victory coming in the third round of the French Open last month.

The victor of the Williams and Giorgi match battles Bertens or Goerges in the semifinals.

"Sometimes I feel, 'Man, I'm in trouble, ' she said after the match". "I'm like, 'I'm going as hard as I can on this one'".

"It was great matches", Giorgi said in her postmatch news conference.

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Rapper friend Drake and fellow singer Justin Timberlake were among those rooting for her on Centre Court.

Then she did a mental check of her right arm: better than good.

Giorgi didn't back off, but the momentum shifted.

Despite the dominant performance, Williams later said she still wasn't quite satisfied with her performance and had a lot to work on going forward.

Dutchwoman Bertens, who had gained an appetite for eating up higher-ranked players having beaten ninth seed Venus Williams and number seven Karolina Pliskova in the past week, appeared set to swallow up another when she won the first set.

Kerber, the former world No.1 and runner-up to Williams in 2016, plays Latvia's 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko in Thursday's second semi-final after outclassing Russian 14th seed Daria Kasatkina 6-3 7-5.

Her opponent on Friday, Julia Goerges, is seeded 13th.

Williams' husband, Alexis Ohanian, shared his excitement for the Wimbledon weekend as well.

It was Serena's 100th career main draw victory on grass. I just tried to fight for every point. ". I would try to go around her more, rather than through her".

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