Serena stays on course as last top-10 seed Pliskova exits

By Nicholas McGee 10 July 2018 3
Serena stays on course as last top-10 seed Pliskova exits

There will be no top-10 seeds in the quarter-finals of the women's singles at Wimbledon for the first time in history, but Serena Williams' charge continued as she eyes a record-equalling 24th grand slam title. 

Karolina Pliskova's exit at the hands of Kiki Bertens saw her become the last top-10 seed to fall, while Williams powered to an easy win over Evgeniya Rodina.

Hsieh Su-wei, conqueror of world number one Simona Halep, failed to follow up that stunning victory as she was beaten by Dominika Cibulkova in a match marred by controversy.

Julia Goerges broke new ground in her defeat of Donna Vekic, and a repeat of the 2016 final is still on the cards after Angelique Kerber prevailed against Belinda Bencic, setting up a clash with Daria Kasatkina following her triumph over Alison van Uytvanck.


Williams needed only 62 minutes to breeze past Rodina 6-2 6-2, but it has not been all plain sailing for the tournament favourite.

She was left in tears after missing daughter Alexis Olympia's first steps while training, but revealed she received a morale boost by reading helpful advice from fellow parents on Twitter.

"I don't usually read mentions. Stuff like that I do, or if I ask for advice I do. It was so positive," Williams said. "So many people, basically everyone in the mentions was like, 'Oh, so did I. It's no big deal.' Or, 'I was at work, I was here.'

"I was just like, 'Wow.' I didn't know that was a common thing. I felt really glad that I posted that. I instantly felt better from all the mums and dads that were posting that it's totally normal."

Williams will face Camila Giorgi in the quarter-finals after the Italian overcame Ekaterina Makarova in straight sets.


Goerges had lost in the first round at the All England Club in each of the last five years, but reached a grand slam quarter-final for the first time in her career with a 6-3 6-2 victory over Vekic.

She now takes on Bertens, a 6-3 7-6 (7-1) winner against Pliskova, who is an opponent she is more than familiar with.

"We know each other pretty well. We played some doubles together. We go for dinner sometimes, as well. We know each other not only on court, but off court as well," Goerges said. "I think it's a great opportunity for both of us. It's already a great tournament for both of us, coming that far probably with the record we've had here."

On their friendship, she added: "It will stay the same after the match as it did the last two times too, at the same time we played doubles."



Cibulkova's 6-4 6-1 triumph against Hsieh appears emphatic, but it was not without drama.

The Slovakian was left furious after she correctly challenged a line call and was awarded a point to put her 40-0 up on Hsieh's serve at 5-4, but umpire Zhang Juan changed her mind and called for the point to be replayed following consultation with the supervisor. Hsieh had rightly argued that she hit the ball back into play, something the umpire claimed not to remember her doing.

Cibulkova, who stated the point should have been hers as Hsieh hit into the net, broke anyway and eased to victory, but said afterwards: "Is it my fault you don't remember if she hit the net or if she put it on my side? After [Hsieh] was complaining, they were talking in Chinese, whatever language, I don't know. It was all wrong, I think. It really messed with me for two balls, then I tried to just calm down, to play my game."

Jelena Ostapenko is Cibulkova's quarter-final opponent, the 2017 French Open champion coming back from 5-2 down in the first set to beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich 7-6 (7-4) 6-0.

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Nicholas McGee