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Rediff.com  » Sports » PIX: Medvedev outlasts Sinner; meets Alcaraz in semis

PIX: Medvedev outlasts Sinner; meets Alcaraz in semis

Last updated on: July 10, 2024 00:33 IST
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IMAGES from Day 9 of the Wimbledon Championships, at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, on Tuesday.

Russia's Daniil Medvedev celebrates victory over Italy's Jannik Sinner in the men's singles quarter-finals at the Wimbledon Championships on Tuesday.

IMAGE: Russia's Daniil Medvedev celebrates victory over Italy's Jannik Sinner in the men's singles quarter-finals at the Wimbledon Championships on Tuesday. Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

Fifth seed Daniil Medvedev edged out world number one Jannik Sinner in a grinding five-set battle to reach the Wimbledon semi-finals for the second successive year on Tuesday.

A strange match full of momentum shifts and lulls was absorbing rather than gripping but Medvedev did not care as he triumphed 6-7(7), 6-4, 7-6(4), 2-6, 6-3 on a covered Centre Court.

 

It snapped a Medvedev's five-match losing sequence to Sinner and avenged his bitter defeat by the Italian in this year's Australian Open final when he squandered a two-set lead.

Jannik Sinner needed treatment off the court early in the third set after apparently feeling ill.

IMAGE: Jannik Sinner needed treatment off the court early in the third set after apparently feeling ill. Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

Top seed Sinner won the opening set in a tight tie-break after saving a set point but mistakes began to creep into his game and after losing the second set he needed treatment off the court early in the third after apparently feeling ill.

Despite losing the third-set tiebreak, Sinner was rejuvenated in the fourth and sent the match into a decider.

The Russian got the early break though and held firm to win in four hours and set up a clash with defending champion Carlos Alcaraz, who beat American Tommy Paul in another quarter-final.

Alcaraz douses Paul fireworks

 Spain's Carlos Alcaraz celebrates after winning the second set during his quarter-final against Tommy Paul of the United States.

IMAGE: Spain's Carlos Alcaraz celebrates after winning the second set during his quarter-final against Tommy Paul of the United States. Photograph: Hannah Mckay/Reuters

Carlos Alcaraz won the battle of the two most recent Queen's Club champions as the Spaniard edged closer to winning a second successive Wimbledon title with an enthralling 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 quarter-final victory over American Tommy Paul.

Paul conjured some breathtaking shot-making during the first two sets and kept drawing roars of approval from the Court One crowd while making life uncomfortable for the third seed.

However, any hopes he might have harboured of ending his country's 21-year-wait for a men's Grand Slam champion at the All England Club this weekend were eventually snuffed out as the 21-year-old Alcaraz produced the goods on the crunch moments to run away with the final two sets.

Tommy Paul

IMAGE: Tommy Paul reacts after winning the first set. Photograph: Hannah Mckay/Reuters

After being kept on court for just over three hours, the third seed won his 12th match in a row at the grasscourt major when Paul swiped the ball wide.

Alcaraz will next meet 2021 US Open champion Daniil Medvedev for a place in Sunday's final.

Paolini pummels Navarro, sets up Vekic semi-final

Italy's Jasmine Paolini celebrates winning her quarter-final against Emma Navarro of the United States.

IMAGE: Italy's Jasmine Paolini celebrates winning her quarter-final against Emma Navarro of the United States. Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

Seventh seed Jasmine Paolini blazed past American Emma Navarro 6-2, 6-1, becoming the first Italian woman to make the Wimbledon semi-finals where she faces experienced Croatian Donna Vekic.

The 28-year-old's victory ensured she eclipsed compatriots Camila Giorgi (2018), Francesca Schiavone (2009), Silvia Farina Elia (2003) and Laura Golarsa (1989), who had all reached the quarter-finals at the grasscourt Grand Slam in the Open era.

Navarro drew first blood in the third game with a forehand rocket but Paolini responded immediately and the French Open runner-up then ramped up the pressure after some heavy exchanges from the baseline to pull away for a 5-2 lead in the opening set.

Emma Navarro makes a double-handed backhand return against Jasmine Paolini.

IMAGE: Emma Navarro makes a double-handed backhand return against Jasmine Paolini. Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

The diminutive Italian mixed things up against her American opponent to comfortably win her fifth straight game and take the first set in double quick time on Centre Court.

Navarro, who had never lost in three previous meetings with Paolini, gave herself a fighting chance with two break points in the third game of the next set but the 19th seed was unable to convert either.

The 23-year-old's hopes of reaching a first Grand Slam semi-final faded further as Paolini took a 5-1 lead, having staved off another comeback attempt.

Paolini wobbled slightly as she looked to land the knockout blow on serve but a wayward shot from Navarro sent her through.

Vekic puts Sun in shade

Croatia's Donna Vekic reacts after beating New Zealand's Lulu Sun in the women's singles quarter-finals.

IMAGE: Croatia's Donna Vekic reacts after beating New Zealand's Lulu Sun in the women's singles quarter-finals. Photograph: Isabel Infantes/Reuters

Donna Vekic nearly quit tennis following knee surgery three years ago but finds herself in a first Grand Slam semi-final on her 43rd main draw appearance after the seasoned Croatian ended Lula Sun's Wimbledon run with a 5-7, 6-4, 6-1 win.

The 28-year-old, who struggled for form and fitness after the operation, burst into tears after beating the 123rd-ranked qualifier to book a clash with seventh seed Jasmine Paolini, who beat 19th seed Emma Navarro in Saturday's final.

"Those couple of years were tough," said Vekic, reflecting on the period after her surgery.

"Now, reaching my best result ever at a Grand Slam, I'm really proud of myself, of the work that I've done, of the work that my team has done.

"I'm thankful to them for believing in me when I didn't."

Victory also meant unseeded Vekic became only the second woman from her country to move into the All England Club semis, matching the feat of Mirjana Lucic in 1999.

Lulu Sun

IMAGE: Lulu Sun appeared a shadow of her former self after winning the first set. Photograph: Isabel Infantes/Reuters

It was not entirely smooth sailing.

Sun saved three break-points under the Court One roof and broke for a crucial 6-5 advantage before digging herself out of a hole again to seize the opening set on serve with the most delicate of drop shots.

Left-hander Sun surrendered her serve in the eighth game of the second set before Vekic made a flurry of double faults while serving for the set, only to regain composure and draw level in the match with another break.

Vekic produced a deft drop shot of her own on set point as Sun appeared a shadow of her former self as the match wore on.

The clash turned on its head when world number 37 Vekic broke in the third set after a double fault from Sun's racket, and the former Australian Open and U.S. Open quarter-finalist quickly pulled away for a 5-0 lead.

She duly settled the contest on serve to dash the cramping Sun's hopes of becoming the first female qualifier to make the Wimbledon semi-finals since American Alexandra Stevenson 25 years ago.

The result was the perfect reward for Vekic's persistence.

Only Barbora Strycova (53), Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (52), Elena Likhovtseva (46) and Roberta Vinci (44) have needed more Grand Slam appearances to make a maiden semi-final since the sport turned professional in 1968.

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