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Wimbledon 2016: Defending champion Serena Williams makes semi-finals

She beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in straight sets.

Serena Williams Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
Williams took a dominant win to progress to the semi-finals at Wimbledon

Wimbledon top seed Serena Williams beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia in straight sets 6-4, 6-4 to progress to the semi-finals at the Championships on Centre Court today. The defending champion, whose older sister Venus also won her quarter-final match, put on a powerful yet composed display today to progress to her 10th Wimbledon semi-final.

It is the eleventh time both sisters have advanced to the semi-finals of a Grand Slam; each time this hs happened in the past, either sister has gone on to win the Slam.

Things did not look all easy for the younger Williams sister today – she began the match with a number of errors and her game appeared marginally patchy initially; that did not last very long, and then the 34-year-old began to rain winners on the court, completely flummoxing her opponent.

After getting past the initial blip of errors – both forced and unforced, Williams delivered incredibly quick winners, stepping up her aggression. With the set drawing to a close, the American seemed to be in a hurry to wrap things up. Her winners became quicker, as did the scoreline in her favour. With three break points, Williams sealed it on her first try, winning the first set 6-4.

Although Pavlyuchenkova impressed in the second set, and was by no means a dud during that match, Williams’ first set win gave her increased aggression and momentum, and she hammered four aces in a single game in that set.

The American showed athleticism, acrobatics and her signature powerful serve as Pavlyuchenkova unravelled towards the end of the second set, with Williams breaking her for an eventual 6-4, 6-4 win.

Williams will meet Elena Vesnina, who beat Eastbourne winner Dominika Cibulkova, in the semi-finals, while sister Venus will meet Serena’s Australian Open nemesis Angelique Kerber.

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