Venus wins, heads for 10th semi­fi­nal

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Howard Fendrich Glyn Kirk, AFP

LON­DON» Venus Wil­liams’ mother could not stop smil­ing and laugh­ing. She had just watched her 37-year-old daugh­ter reach the Wim­ble­don semi­fi­nals for the 10th time and, well, the whole thing was just a bit hard to be­lieve.

“She says, ‘I love my job!’ and she means it. I guess she’s kind of like a boxer: Peo­ple think it’s time for her to quit be­cause she’s too old,” Oracene Price said af­ter leav­ing Cen­tre Court, where the roof was shut be­cause of rain Tues­day. “But she keeps get­ting back in the ring — and she seems to be do­ing pretty well. This is re­ally amaz­ing.”

En­joy­ing a ca­reer re­nais­sance deep into her 30s, de­spite deal­ing with an en­ergy-sap­ping dis­ease, Wil­liams rode a strong serve that pro­duced eight aces to a 6-3, 7-5 vic­tory over French Open cham­pion Je­lena Ostapenko of Latvia.

To get to what would be her ninth fi­nal at the All Eng­land Club, the 10th-seeded Wil­liams will need to win Thurs­day against No. 6 Jo­hanna Konta, the first Bri­tish wo­man in the semi­fi­nals since Vir­ginia Wade was the run­ner-up in 1978.

The other semi­fi­nal will be Gar­bine Mugu­ruza of Spain against 87th-ranked Mag­dalena Ry­barikova of Slo­vakia. Mugu­ruza, the 2015 Wim­ble­don run­ner-up and 2016 French Open cham­pion, de­feated Svet­lana Kuznetsova 6-3, 6-4. Ry­barikova, the low­est-ranked Wim­ble­don semi­fi­nal­ist since 2008, got past 24th-seeded CoCo Van­deweghe of the U.S. 6-3, 6-3 in a match sus­pended at 2-all in the sec­ond set be­cause of show­ers and moved from Court No. 1 to Cen­tre Court so it could be fin­ished in­doors.

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