Venus Williams has the chance to match Steffi Graf’s (and Serena, if she wins her semi final) tally of nine Wimbledon finals when she takes on Angelique Kerber in the second semi final of the Women’s Singles event. It would be her first since losing to her sister in 2009. Check out the Williams vs Kerber Head to Head stats.
Despite a shortened schedule these days, Venus has still managed to move back into the top 10 again this year after her run to the last 16 of the French Open and will be anywhere from No.5 to No.7 depending on her performance for the rest of this tournament. It’s fair to say that her draw hasn’t been the toughest route to the semi finals of a grand slam but there was still ample opportunity for her to be surprised, especially by Russia’s Darya Kasatkina who was edged out 10-8 in the final set of their third round clash.
Wins over Carla Suarez Navarro and Yaroslava Shvedova followed but the new World No.2 is a much tougher prospect. Kerber is accomplished on the grass and was a semi finalist at Wimbledon in 2012. Commenting on the threat Kerber poses, Venus said “She’s been in this position before. She knows how to play on the grass. She’s got to be another opponent that I have to figure out how to get a lot of balls in.”
It represents a great change of fortunes for Kerber who, after the high of winning the Australian Open, was dumped out of the French Open in round one. Kerber won an up and down clash in straight sets against Simona Halep, 7-6 7-5. There were 13 breaks overall, with the German edging it 7-6. If Kerber is broken so many times in this match, it will likely not end well for her although Halep offers a different kind of returning threat to Venus who will go bigger on more occasions as opposed to Halep who builds on her return to win points.
Another crack at Serena in the final would be a great opportunity for Kerber, who would have pulled off a great feat in managing to beat Serena in a slam final twice if she were to win it – never mind when both are in the same year. The only person with multiple wins over Serena in grand slam finals is her opponent Venus Williams. If the final is somehow Angelique Kerber vs Elena Vesnina the No.1 ranking will be up for grabs for Kerber in the final as well.
Prediction – Angelique Kerber in three sets