By Ros Satar, at Wimbledon

  • Serena Williams [25] def. Camila Giorgi 3-6 6-3 6-4
  • Faces Julia Goerges for a spot in the final
WIMBLEDON, UK – Seven-time champion Serena Williams looks set to contest for title No. 8 as she battled past Camila Giorgi to set up a semi-final clash with Julia Goerges.

 

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Seven-time Wimbledon champion Serena Williams continues to astound on her return from the birth of her daughter, as she fought past Camila Giorgi to reach the semi-final. For the first time this tournament she dropped a set, as Giorgi’s aggressive play rewarded her with a break that was to prove crucial as she went n to fend off break points and held on to the advantage for the set.

Understandably there has been a lot of focus at every stage of her comeback – from the exhibition at the Mubadala World Tennis Championships, to her return at Indian Wells and Miami before a run to the fourth round of Roland Garros.

However, injury cut that run short, rendering her unable to serve thanks to a pectoral muscle injury, and denying everyone a clash between Williams and Maria Sharapova. This time around focus was on whether Williams would be seeded (she was) and where she would land up in the draw.

It did not even matter that her fellow seeds would avoid her in the draw, given their exodus but it was the unseeded Giorgi that presented her biggest challenge to date.

Williams said: ”I felt good to get through it because it was a tough match. Sometimes I feel, Man, I’m in trouble. Sometimes I feel, I can fight. For whatever reason, today I was so calm. Even when I was down the first set, I thought, Well, she’s playing great. I’m doing a lot of the right things. It is what it is.”

She will now face Julia Goerges for the second time in as many Slams, but it was during that match that she picked up the injury that cut short her Slam come-back, But today we saw a return to the serving speeds of 122mph.

She said: ”I went for it. I’m like, I’m going as hard as I can on this one. I saw it was 122. It felt good. My arm is, like, amazing. That feels good, too.”

Prior to the birth of Alexis Olympia, we were very much accustomed to seeing Serena Williams in the driving seat, but this time around, with other demands on her time and other priorities, we see a very different player who might want to go beyond where she was before, but also understands she is at the start of a long process.

“I think everything right now is a little bit of a surprise. To be here, to be in the semi-finals. I mean, I always say I plan on it, I would like to be there, have these goals. But when it actually happens, it still is, like, Wow, this is really happening.”

Looking ahead to the clash, she knows the change in surface sets the needle back to the start of the record.

“I played Julia in the French. That was four or five weeks ago. That doesn’t matter. This is a whole new match, it’s a new surface, it’s everything. We’re starting from zero. I’m going to go out there and just do what I can, do my best, see what happens.”

The Ladies’ semi-finals will take place on Centre Court on Thursday, from 1pm (BST).

 

 

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