London - Venus Williams will feel at home when she plays
Jelena Ostapenko on Centre Court in the Wimbledon quarter-finals on Tuesday.
The American appeared at her first Wimbledon in 1997, the
year the Latvian was born, and won it for the first time when Ostapenko was
For 20-year-old Ostapenko, the newly crowned French Open
champion, it will be a first outing on the most famous grass court in the
Williams, at 37 the oldest woman in the draw with five
Wimbledon singles titles to her name, has probably lost count of her
appearances on the court.
She said after trouncing Ana Konjuh 6-3 6-2 on Monday she
was happy for the success of her young opponent in Paris.
"I know she had an amazing moment there. She's riding
on that momentum. Confidence I'm sure. It's just been such an amazing result
Ostapenko, though, can hardly remember ever watching
Williams play, saying she had been keener on Venus's sister Serena when she was
"I think I was watching more her sister's matches
because she was my idol," Ostapenko said after dispatching fourth seed
Elina Svitolina 6-3 7-6(6).
Through her first four rounds here, the powerful young
Latvian has appeared thoroughly relaxed and nerve-free.
She will need to carry that feeling into the quarterfinal
against her supremely experienced opponent, whose movement round the court
belies her age.
"I just keep stretching. I have no secrets. I'm just
doing what I always have done," Williams said.
"I think I stretch a little harder now. But only
because I enjoy it."