Venus Williams says she will ask youngster sister Serena for tips in how to beat Spain’s Garbine Muguruza in tomorrow’s ladies final at Wimbledon.
Williams dashed Johanna Konta’s hopes of becoming Britain’s first female singles champion at SW19 in 40 years, storming to a 6-4 6-2 victory yesterday.
The American rolled back the years with a ruthless display on Centre Court and will now meet Spain’s Garbine Muguruza for a shot at her eighth grand slam title.
Serena, who is taking time off for her pregnancy, beat Murgaza in final at SW19 in 2015.
“I definitely will ask her,” Williams said. “I’m sure she’s going to give me hopefully some things that will make a difference for me in the match.
“I miss her so much. Even more yesterday and today. I try to take the same courage on the court that she would have.
“I did think of that. I tried to do the things she would do. I don’t know that I play exactly the same way she does. But I really tried to be inspired by it.”
Williams has now played Konta six times, with their victories split at three each. On Konta’s potential, Williams added: “She played an amazing tournament.
“She showed a lot of courage, played in tough situations against players who were in form. I feel like she wants these majors, she’ll have an opportunity.”
Muguruza is determined to see her name inscribed alongside the greats of Wimbledon after securing a showdown in Saturday’s final. The Spaniard tormented Magdalena Rybarikova for an hour and five minutes on Centre Court on Thursday, on her way to clinching a second Wimbledon final appearance.
The thumping 6-1 6-1 win came against a Slovakian player who had said it was her childhood dream to play in a semi-final on Centre Court, but who might have nightmares about how it panned out.
Now the 2015 runner-up will tackle five-time champion William. Seven-time Wimbledon queen Serena is the player who was Muguruza’s conqueror two years ago and her name and that of Venus are unmissable on the board within the All England Club that lists all the former champions.
“I always stare at the wall where all the names are of the previous winners,” Muruguza said. “There are a lot actually that are repetitive. I would like to see my name there hopefully. I’m here, I have another chance. “
Asked if there was a particular former winner or winners that inspired her, Muguruza said: “Not one (in particular) gives me motivation, because all the names that I read, I know all of them.
“For the last few years, you see a lot of the Williams surname. I look forward to putting a Spanish name back there.”
Meanwhile Roger Federer admits even he is surprised at his remarkable return to form but stopped short of saying he is playing the best tennis of his career.
Federer plays world number 15 Tomas Berdych today in the men’s semi-finals and is now the overwhelming favourite to seal a 19th grand slam title.
Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray’s surprise exits in the last eight on Wednesday means Federer, at 35, is the last of the game’s ‘big four’ left at SW19. Rafael Nadal lost in the last 16.
Federer’s resurgence is all the more impressive given he took six months off last year to overcome a knee injury and then sat out the clay-court season in an attempt to hit the summer fresh.
After nearly five years without a grand slam title, Federer won the Australian Open in January and is moving closer to his second in seven months.
“Am I surprised? Maybe a little bit. But the plan was always to hopefully be strong also later on in my career,” Federer said.
“I don’t see myself playing better than a few years ago but I always hope to improve every year. I think it’s definitely different ever since my injury.
“I don’t know if I’m playing better this year than I have in ‘14, ‘15 when I had great runs at Wimbledon here. Then I just ran into Novak, who was red hot.
“Honestly, it was difficult to come past him for anybody, especially in the big matches. I’m just very happy that I’m still doing so well.”
In the other semi-final the tournament’s dark horse takes on its surprise package as Croatian Marin Cilic goes up against Murray’s conqueror Sam Querrey.
Cilic looks the most likely player left to trouble Federer, having taken the veteran to five sets and squandered two match points in their quarter-final here last year.
The fifth seed is also the only other major champion left in the draw and Cilic says his 2014 US Open triumph gives him the belief he can do it again.
“I would say winning the US Open has helped me for all these grand slams I have played so far, and I believe the rest of my career,” Cilic said.
“Preparation-wise I believe in my own abilities. I believe when coming at these stages of the tournament, I’m going to still be able to play great tennis.
“I know I have it in me that I can win. That’s extremely important.”
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