Wimbledon surprise package Tatjana Maria said she was living out a dream after reaching her maiden grand slam semi-final.
Maria also matched a feat achieved by Serena Williams and only two other players since 1984 – Mirjana Lucic (1999) and Zheng Jie (2008) – in reaching the last four at Wimbledon as a player ranked outside the top 100 on the WTA list.
The 34-year-old German, who beat compatriot Jule Niemeier 4-6 6-2 7-5 on Tuesday, is ranked 103rd, and despite her efforts at Wimbledon she will not soar in the standings after the WTA's decision to strip the grand slam of ranking points.
Yet that will matter little for the mother of two, who knew she would face either Marie Bouzkova or Ons Jabeur in her first slam semi-final.
4 - Since 1984, only 4 female players have reached the semifinals in #Wimbledon ranked outside the top-100: Mirjana Lucic in 1999 (#134), Jie Zheng in 2008 (#133), Serena Williams in 2018 (#181) and Tatjana #Maria this year (#103). Miracle@WTA @WTA_insider #Wimbledon2022 pic.twitter.com/5qqF8wERQO— OptaAce (@OptaAce) July 5, 2022
"I have goosebumps everywhere. It was such a tough match against Jule. I think today we made Germany really proud after our match," said Maria in her on-court interview.
"My two little girls, it's a dream to live this with my family, to live this with my two girls. Almost one year ago I gave birth, it's crazy.
"Ons [Jabeur], I mean it would be really nice to play her [in the semi-final]. She is part of my family, she loves my kids, she is playing with them every day.
"It would be great to play her, we never know. But I am only happy that I am in a semi-final now."