Tennis

Kerber downs Lisicki

2012-07-03 21:31
Angelique Kerber (Gallo IMages)

London - Angelique Kerber defeated fellow German Sabine Lisicki, the conqueror of Maria Sharapova, in a nerve-racking battle of the blondes 6-3, 6-7 (7/9), 7-5 on Tuesday to reach her first Wimbledon semi-final.

Eighth seed Kerber will face either Polish third seed Agnieszka Radwanska or Maria Kirilenko, the Russian 17th seed, for a place in Saturday's final after getting the better of big-hitting Lisicki.

The match, played under the Centre Court roof as rain continued to plague the schedule, showcased the first time since 1987 that two German women had made the quarter-finals.

The 24-year-old Kerber, who had never previously got beyond the third round in four previous appearances at the All England Club, racked up a tour-leading 45th win of the year.

But it was a roller-coaster affair for Kerber who squandered four match points as memories of the five match points she wasted in the Eastbourne final against Tamira Paszek almost came back to haunt her.

"It was unbelievable. Sabine played great tennis and I needed to be at my best to beat her," said Kerber, who was making her debut on Centre Court.

Lisicki, sporting vivid yellow nail polish on her fingers, needed treatment on a painful-looking blister on her left thumb at the end of the first set and quickly fell 3-0 down in the second.

But she battled back to 3-3, saved two match points in the 10th game and another in the tiebreak.

In the decider, there were six breaks of serve in 11 games before Kerber finally won through to claim her fifth win in five meetings against her Fed Cup teammate.

Lisicki finished with a whopping 57 winners but 50 unforced errors while Kerber fired down just 19 winners but with a low of 13 errors.

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