- Chris Sobey
British Challenge Ends at Wimbledon. A below par Johanna Konta was easily despatched by the experienced Venus Williams.
History was not on the side of Rybarikova, who was aiming to become the first ever unseeded player to reach the women’s Wimbledon final, on Thursday as nerves over awed her and she tamely handed the victory to Muguruza 6-1 6-1. It was a similar story for Britain’s Johanna Konta against veteran and five time Wimbledon winner Venus Williams (Advised 18/1), whose greater experience and composure shone through in her 6-4 6-2 win. Muguruza and Venus Williams face each other for the fifth time in Saturday’s final, Venus leads the head-to-head 3-1 with her wins all coming on hard courts between 2013 and 2015 and Muguruza win came on clay this year at the Rome Masters.
If Venus does the unthinkable and wins a sixth title at the age of 37 she will become the joint oldest winner of the Championship since Charlotte Sterry who won the title way back in 1908 and the oldest player in the open era beating Navratilova’s record when she won the 1990 title aged 33. The men’s semi-finals take place today and so far I was justified in opposing the top-four seeds with Murray, Djokovic and Nadal all losing before this stage, it’s just a shame I could not find the player to capitalise from the top-half of the draw.
Third seed Roger Federer looks like he will continue the trend of one of the Big Four and a player seeded no higher than three winning the last ten titles and if he does win today and on Sunday he will become the oldest winner of the Championships at 35 and the all-time Championship winner record holder with eight. Federer has to beat Berdych before he gets a shot at winning a record eighth title and judging by past encounters he should emerge victorious today as he leads the head-to-head 18-6, has won the last seven in a row, including both meetings this year on hard courts, he leads the head-to-head 2-1 on grass and has looked imperious and all season.
The other semi-final between 24th seed Querrey and 7th Cilic should be a lot closer and should go the way of Cilic as he leads the head-to-head 4-0, including three wins on grass and two epic five setters at Wimbledon. All four of their encounters were extremely close and I expect a similar five set outcome today and backing Cilic to Win 3-2 sets should go close to returning a profit.