Marion Bartoli (FRA)(15) v Kirsten Flipkens (BEL)(20) – 1st on Centre Court
Former Wimbledon finalist Marion Bartoli comes into today’s semi-final clash the more experienced player – her opponent, Kirsten Flipkens, has never made it past the fourth round of a Grand Slam (although she did win the girls’ singles title at SW19 back in 2003). Aged 27, she has finally found the form to reach the business end of a major tournament, after failing to make it past the qualifying stages last year following the discovery of blood clots in her leg. On Tuesday she defeated former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova en route to her maiden semi-final but today’s opponent will be tricky to overcome. Bartoli recorded a convincing win over American rising star Sloane Stephens in the quarters at a venue that clearly suits her style of play. The Frenchwoman’s unusual double-handed groundstrokes were far from consistent against the young American, with eight straight dropped service games in the second set, but her dogged persistence won her the match and will prove a significant obstacle for her rival who is bidding to become the first Belgian in the final since Justin Henin lost to Amélie Mauresmo in 2006.
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)(4) v Sabine Lisicki (GER)(23) – 2nd on Centre Court
Sabine Lisicki has been the darling of this year’s tournament, her smiling demeanour and powerful game delighting the crowds as she ousted overwhelming favourite Serena Williams in the fourth round. On Tuesday she dispatched with Laura Robson’s conqueror, Kaia Kanepi, in straight sets to set up a clash with fourth seed, Agnieszka Radwanska, who overcame Li Na in a tricky three-set showdown. Last year’s Polish finalist is now the highest ranked player left in the tournament and, with experience on her side, will fancy her chances when she steps out on court this afternoon. But 23-year-old Lisicki is a crowd favourite and her form coming into today’s match should not be under-estimated. With both players desperate to reach the final, this could be an epic few hours of tennis out on Centre Court.
Today’s Wimbledon coverage begins at 12:30pm on BBC2 and 1:45pm on BBC1
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