LONDON (AP) – Decades ago, when the Williams sisters were kids in California, taking tennis lessons from Dad on a municipal court and imagining playing at Grand Slam tournaments one day, it was Venus – older, taller, stronger – who usually beat Serena. That would also leave the 20-time Grand Slam champion needing only to win the USA Open in August to become the first woman since Steffi Graf in 1988 to land all four majors in the same year.
Vasek Pospisil rallied from two sets down to overcome No. 22 Viktor Troicki 4-6, 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-3, 6-3.
Serena Williams, left, and Venus Williams hug at the net after their match on Monday.
It was nearly as if the sisters were relieved the ordeal was over as Serena barely celebrated before they quickly walked off court together.
While Williams, Sharapova and Azarenka have 27 Grand Slam titles between them, Radwanska, the 2012 Wimbledon runner-up, is the only one in the bottom half who has even been in a major final. She is 35 but said she expects to be back at Wimbledon next year. Serena landed six aces and put in the majority of her first serves as well.
She surrendered her serve in the seventh game with a double fault, could only watch in wonder as a 121mph ace whizzed past her outstretched racket and produced a backhand error to fall to a 15th defeat against her sister.
But this year, Venus has been nearing her past high standards, winning all three of her matches in straight sets.
What she said: “It’s hard to feel excited,” Serena told the BBC after the match. “It’s different. Especially when she’s going for something this historic, which is achievable for her”.
Instead world number one and top seed Serena will plough on, meeting Victoria Azarenka in Tuesday’s last-eight line-up.
Azarenka is now 3-16 against Serena and she hasn’t defeated her in a match since 2013 and has had trouble regaining momentum after suffering a crushing loss to Serena in the 2013 United States Open finals. It was the fist time in 11 years that the US placed three women in the Wimbledon quarters.
– “Time!” the chair umpire kept saying Monday, the customary reminder to resume play after a changeover. His next opponent is 20th-seeded Roberto Bautista Agut, a Spaniard who is playing at Wimbledon for the third time and has never reached the fourth round.
“I came up with some good lobs and passing shots”. “That happens. But overall I just enjoy it”.
Meanwhile, French Open runner-up Lucie Safarova was sent tumbling out of Wimbledon in the fourth round yesterday by unseeded American Coco Vandeweghe.
Federer has had a relatively straightforward first week, winning his first two matches in straight sets and his third in four.
He fell two sets behind against big-serving South African Anderson but had levelled the fourth-round match when fading light brought play to a halt on Court One.
“Playing before the later rounds is definitely not ideal, in particular because I’m her sister”, she said.