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Venus Williams to meet Safina in Wimbledon semi-finals


Latest update : 2009-06-30

Defending champion Venus Williams sailed into the Wimbledon semi-finals on Tuesday after beating Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska. She will now face world number one Dinara Safina, who defeated Germany's Sabine Lisicki.

AFP - Defending champion Venus Williams admits she feels invincible at Wimbledon after cruising into the semi-finals with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over 11th seed Agnieszka Radwanska on Tuesday.

Williams, the third seed, overwhelmed Radwanska in just over an hour and her pursuit of a sixth Wimbledon crown looks unstoppable.

Venus will face Dinara Safina, the top seed and world number one, in the last four as she continues her bid to become the first woman to win a hat-trick of Wimbledon singles' titles since Steffi Graf in 1993.

Venus has yet to drop a set in five rounds this year and her winning streak at the All England Club has now reached 19 matches.

Even more remarkably, she has won 32 consecutive sets here since Japan's Akiko Morigami took the second set of their third round match in 2007.

"I do a lot of good things right. That first set for me was really almost perfect," Venus said.

"The second set I think I got a little bit impatient the first couple of games, but I was able to mentally bring it back and realized that maybe I did have to hit a few more balls, because everyone lifts their game, especially after a first set that was one sided.

"Do I feel invincible? I'd like to say yes, but I really do work at it."

For the eighth time in 10 years, the five-time Wimbledon champion has reached the semi-finals here.

Even sister Serena, a two-time champion herself, will struggle to subdue Venus in this mood if they meet in the final.

Safina may be ranked higher than Venus but she will be a clear underdog in the semi-finals.

"You're right, she has the top ranking, but I have more the experience in this tournament and more success. I've been playing a little longer," Venus said.

"When I go out there, I'm going to feel like I want to make it happen on my side of the net."

Williams has been suffering from a left knee injury that slightly restricts her movement and she walked onto Court One with the knee heavily bandaged again.

But a typically aggressive start from Venus underlined the point as she broke in the second game. Even though Radwanska tried to keep Venus on the move to test her injury, the American's power-game took over.

Williams broke again with a flashing forehand return before closing out the first set with two aces.

An error-strewn Venus service game allowed Radwanska to break at the start of the second set.

But Venus turned up the heat and broke straight back. The decisive break followed in the fifth game and Williams drove home the advantage to go through.

Radwanska admitted the experience of playing Venus and Serena is unlike any other in tennis.

"It's very hard to play if she has a very good day. If she's playing good everything is in," Radwanska said.

"I was trying my best but if I'm playing against Serena and Venus, they're playing such a good tennis. It's different than other opponents."

Date created : 2009-06-30