Reigning champion Venus Williams remains on course for a record-breaking hat-trick of Wimbledon titles after cruising through her quarter-final against unseeded Russian Elena Likhovtseva.
The world number one became the first player to reach the semi-finals after taking just 47 minutes to suppress the challenge of the world number 48.
The 26-year-old Russian had failed to take a set off Williams in any of their seven previous meetings going back five years and only briefly threatened to end her dismal run.
Likhovtseva began well enough, restricting the American to a solitary point in her first two service games, and the first five games all went with serve.
But that was as good as it got for the Russian, whose first serve gradually began let her down badly and she was broken in the sixth game as Williams wrapped up the first set 6-2 in 27 minutes.
If Likhovtseva, who ended the hopes of Britain’s Elena Baltacha in the second round, had reason to be pleased with her form in the first set, she will have been mortified at the way her game rapidly disintegrated as Williams stepped up a gear.
Moving superbly around centre court and showing no sign of discomfort from her knee problem, Williams was in devastating form at the baseline and was quick to come to the net when it was necessary.
The Russian had just two chances to break the magnificent Williams serve while the champion was in ruthless form, winning five of her six break points to race ominously into a semi-final showdown with either Justine Henin, last year’s runner-up, or Monica Seles.