However, after a relatively untroubled first set on Centre Court, she lost a hugely entertaining second as the two identikit 6ft-plus blondes with matching white visors slugged it out. “She was playing with a lot of confidence and had nothing to lose”. Muguruza took the all-important lead by winning the seventh game and broke her opponent to eventually serve out the match.
Sharapova had struggled for consistency all day but put together a run of aggressive, accurate returns together to break again for a 4-2 lead and then landed a rare ace to finish off her next service game to make it 5-2.
The Serb, who has now reached 25 Grand Slam quarter-finals in a row, goes on to face Croatia’s United States Open champion Marin Cilic for a place in the semi-finals.
Serena Williams survived a scare to book a semi-final showdown with old rival Maria Sharapova as the world No. 1 battled back to defeat Victoria Azarenka 3-6, 6-2, 6-3.
“I was pretty dominant in the first and early in the second set but things slipped away”, said the five-times grand slam champion. It was a very tough match and I am just so excited.
“You have to give everything you have on a special occasion on a special court”.
Garbiñe Muguruza said she was proud to become the first Spanish woman to play in a Wimbledon semi-final since Arantxa Sánchez Vicario, after overcoming a strong challenge from Timea Bacsinszky on No1 Court. At 4-3 and 15-15 she responded to one of Bacsinszky’s slices with a down-the-line forehand, then took the first of two break points after a punishing rally and served out the match in an hour and 27 minutes.
Spain’s Garbine Muguruza is looking to pull on previous experience of competing against, and besting, the WTA Tour’s leading lights as she prepares for her first grand slam semi-final at Wimbledon.
“It was a very intense game but I’m so happy and relieved”.
Muguruza got into the zone for the business end of the tournament by watching the film “Silence of the Lambs” and once she finished with her heavy hitting at the All England Club on Tuesday, it was Bacsinszky who had stopped screaming.