(July 10,2017) The wide-open ladies field at Wimbledon is down to the final eight in London.
In a battle between two former Wimbledon finalists, No. 1 Angelique Kerber lost to 14th seed Garbine Muguruza 4-6, 6-4, 6-4. Last year’s finalist Kerber will lose her top ranking after this fortnight.
Five-time Wimbledon winner Venus Williams advanced with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Croatian teen Ana Konjuh.
The 37-year-old American made her major debut at the 1997 Roland Garros, seven months before Konjuh was born.
This is Williams’ 20th Wimbledon appearance.
“Winning never gets old at any stage in your career, ever, ever,” Williams said to media.
She’ll play French Open winner Jelena Ostapenko next.
“I mean, I’m sure she hits well off all sides, Williams said of her next opponent. “I have to see what the nuances are once the game starts, because you can’t necessarily plan for those.”
French Open winner Jelena Ostapenko needed eight match points to eliminate fourth seed Elina Svitolina 6-3, 7-6 (6).
Before winning the title at Roland Garros last month, Ostapenko had never before been past the third round at a major tournament. She was the first woman to win her first tournament title at a a major tournament since 1979.
As for facing Williams next, “I think I play better with every match, also like at the French,” Ostapenko said. “So I hope I can keep it up.”
There has been controversy over court assignments for the women’s matches at Wimbledon over the years, as the tournament schedules two men’s matches on Centre Court.
“I mean, yeah, I think I deserve to play on a better court than Court 12, I guess,” noted the French Open champion.
“I’m sure that the women … would want more matches on Centre or Court No. 1 over the whole fortnight,” Williams said.
“I was expecting another court,” Muguruza said.
No. 2 seed Simona Halep stands a win away from the No. 1 ranking. The two-time Roland Garros finalist defeated former No. 1 Victoria Azarenka 7-6, 6-2 to reach the quarterfinals. Azarenka is playing her first major since returning to the tour after having a baby.
Halep will play Johanna Konta next. Konta, the sixth seed, became the first British woman to reach the final eight since 1984, when she beat Caroline Garcia 7-6(3), 4-6, 6-4. Konta holds a 2-0 record over Halep.
This is the furthest Konta has gone in the draw during the Wimbledon fortnight, with a chance to make history. The last British woman to win Wimbledon was Virginia Wade 40 years ago.
“It’s very exciting,” Konta said to media. “It’s another step forward to being involved in the event for the full two weeks.”
“Of course, I’ve dreamed of it ever since I was a little girl, to be a Grand Slam champion.”
American Coco Vandeweghe, the 24th seed, has reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals for a second straight year. She beat former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki, the fifth seed 7-6 (4), 6-4.
Flying under the radar, two-time major winner Svetlana Kuznetsova took out 2012 finalist Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 6-4. It’s the first time in ten years that the Russian has reached the quarterfinals. She has never gone beyond the final eight. The seventh seed will face off against Garbine Muguruza.
“I’ve been out here awhile, and since I was a kid they told me I’m never going to be anywhere near the top,” Kuznetsova said to media.
“I’m used to it. The important thing is to understand that opinions don’t matter. It actually helps me. I felt better here, more free. If people don’t believe in me that’s their choice.”
In an all-unseeded match-up, Magdalena Rybarikova beat Petra Martic of Croatia 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 to reach the quarterfinals for the first time. Rybarikova, ranked 87th, was off the tour seven months after last year’s Wimbledon.
The Slovak who had not been beyond the third round of any major, upset the third seed Karolina Pliskova in the second round.