In their first meeting, Serena Williams and the American American Alison Riske became acquainted with each other's excellent grasshopper games for three captivating sets. Ultimately, as you might expect, it was the 23-gang Grand Slam single master, rather than the first Grand Slam quarter-finalist who called 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 to move on to her 11. Wimbledon semifinal. She is now 97-11 at the All England Club.
"It was really satisfying," Serena said. "I wouldn't have won that match a couple of weeks ago. Every match here has really helped me and really talked.
"She was really so close to winning today."
– Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2019
It wasn't easy for Serena, who was broken by Riske five times in Tuesday. The fearless 29-year-old from Pittsburgh had rallied to winning after losing the first set in three of his previous four Wimbledon matches, but this third set was a decider for many. In spite of losing the first set, Riske pressed and was rewarded with a break in the 10th game of the second set to send the match to a third.
The Serena led 3-1, 40-15 in the third set, but was broken by his relentless opponent. But instead of being rattled, Serena sat down and hit Riske back at 4-3 for a lead she wouldn't release.
"I lost my server a few times as I was 40-15 (at 3-1 in the third set) I lost my server," said Serena. "It meant even more to shut it out when I was 40-15."
All in all, the seven-hour Wimbledon champion fired 18 aces and 48 winners along the way to victory.
Up next for the 23rd time Grand Slam champion is either crowd favorite Johanna Konta who disturbed two-hour Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova or Barbora Strycova. Serena and Konta split their two previous meetings, where Konta won the last one – a crooked first round in San Jose. Against Strycova, the 37-year-old leads their head-to-head series, 3-0.