Now at the semi final stage, Serena Williams‘ chances of finally getting her 24th singles grand slam look very big. She will be the heavy favourite against Barbora Strycova who is in her first slam semi final at the age of 33. The winner will play either Elina Svitolina or Simona Halep, who play in the first match on Thursday.
Serena looks to be in fine form now, heading into the deep end of the tournament where she gets tougher and tougher to beat. She did have to be at her best to fight off an inspired Alison Riske, beating her fellow American in three sets – 6-4 4-6 6-3. “She was not giving it to me. I needed to step up and take it. That’s what I had to do.” she said.
Strycova is now in the semi finals of both the doubles and singles after a win against Johanna Konta on Tuesday. She had to come from a break down in the opener but was always in control after taking the first set, eventually cruising to a 7-6 6-1 victory. Her more traditional grass court style is a rarity these days and Konta didn’t know what to do for large parts with 34 unforced errors helping her opponent out a great deal.
“This is the first time since Australia that I actually felt, like, good, It’s been a really, really long year for me already, and hard year, because I’m usually not typically injured. I don’t know where I am [in terms of my level]. I do know I feel good. Now that I feel good, I can actually focus on training and technique and practice, something that I just literally haven’t been able to do a lot of.” Serena said afterwards. It’s hard to bet against her if she’s fit and confident but Strycova will look to the 2015 US Open semi final for inspiration. There, a stunning performance from Roberta Vinci bamboozled a Serena who was looking to complete the calendar year grand slam. Keeping Serena from teeing off at will is going to be key for the Czech, otherwise it could be over very quickly.
Prediction – Serena Williams in straight sets