Serena Williams storms on as last top-10 seed Karolina Pliskova goes out

first_imgShare on Messenger Share on WhatsApp Read more Support The Guardian Share on LinkedIn Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal progress ominously into Wimbledon quarters match reports Andy Murray protege Aidan McHugh slips to boys’ singles loss Read more Share on Pinterest Share via Email Wimbledon 2018 … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. 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This could be because it launched early, our rights have expired, there was a legal issue, or for another reason. Her 6-2, 6-2 win over Russia’s Evgeniya Rodina, the world No 120 and a fellow mother, was clean and clinical, with 30 winners and 11 unforced errors.But Williams, as she admits, is a perfectionist and if she is to win the title again, at the age of 36, there is still work to be done. “There’s a lot to improve on,” she said. “This is only my fourth tournament back. I would hope there’s a lot to continue to improve on. There is. I feel like I’m getting to where I want to be.“There’s so much farther I want to go to get back where I was and go beyond that. I’m always striving for perfection.“There’s a lot of things that I don’t know if you can tell, but I really need to work on. Hopefully I can get there. So hopefully I’ll start feeling better as well as I am on the court.”Williams dropped three points as she raced to a 3-0 lead before Rodina got on the board. The Russian had beaten the 10th seed, Madison Keys, in the previous round but never looked likely to trouble the American, who will now play Camila Giorgi for a place in the semi-finals. Giorgi, the world No 52 whose form can fluctuate between wild and brilliant, showed more of the latter as she beat Ekaterina Makarova 6-3, 6-4 to reach her first grand slam quarter-final.The 26-year-old Italian then caused a few raised eyebrows when she was asked what she had learned by watching Williams over the years, she claimed that she “doesn’t follow women’s tennis” or tennis in general.Williams, though, knows all about her. “I played her a couple of times,” she said.“She has a very powerful game. To be so small, she brings so much power and energy on the court. She’s very aggressive.“She does well on grass. It’s good to know someone. A lot of the players I’ve played this tournament, I don’t think I’ve played them before. But it will be good. I know her game. Look forward to it.”Bertens has always had her suspicions of grass, much preferring the clay, a surface on which she reached the semi-finals at the French Open two years ago. But her big game has been coming good this fortnight and when Pliskova threatened a fightback in the second set, coming from 4-1 down to 4-4, she held her nerve and took the tiebreak 7-1. Share on Twitter US sports “I like the clay courts more, everyone knows that,” said Bertens, who will now play the 13th seed, Julia Görges, a 6-3, 6-2 winner over the unseeded Donna Vekic of Croatia.“But this year we try to play a little bit more aggressive, like on the hard courts and on the grass as well. The last few weeks was going well, but I didn’t win the matches. This week it’s all coming together. Playing some great tennis. I’m still here, so it’s going really well.”Angelique Kerber, at No 11, is the highest seed remaining. The German, the runner-up here in 2016 and twice a grand slam champion, saw off Belinda Bencic of Switzerland 6-3, 7-6 (5). She will play Daria Kasatkina, the No 14 seed from Russia, who beat unseeded Belgian Alison Van Uytvanck 6-7, 6-3, 6-2. Tennis Topics Reuse this content Share on Facebook Seven of the remaining eight women who have made it through to the quarter-finals here will be dreaming big, wondering if it will be their name engraved on the trophy on Saturday afternoon for the first time. Unfortunately for them, the other member of the eight is Serena Williams. She has been here before.The defeat of seventh seed Karolina Pliskova on Monday, beaten 6-3, 7-6(1) by Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands, means that for the first time since Wimbledon introduced seedings in 1927, none of the top eight are in the quarter-finals.Williams, who was seeded 25th on her return, nine months after having her first child, is now an even more overwhelming favourite to win the title for an eighth time and with each match she is getting closer and closer to her best.last_img

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