Flipkens’ fairytale continues with Kvitova upset
Originally published on: 02/07/13 00:00
Kvitova, the 2011 Wimbledon champion, was one of only two players in the ladies' quarter-finals to have won a major title, but bowed out with a 4-6 6-3 6-4 defeat, while former French Open champion Li Na was beaten by Agnieszka Radwanska.
Kvitova, the No.8 seed, required treatment from the doctor during the third set, but despite giving it her all, was unable to find her way back into the match.
Flipkens, 27, suffered a health scare last April when she was diagnosed with blood clots in her calf and subsequently dropped to No.262 in the world rankings and lost her funding. She has since enjoyed one of the best seasons of her career, reaching the fourth round at the Australian Open and breaking into the world’s top 20 for the first time.
Playing in her first Grand Slam quarter-final, Flipkens showed no signs of nerves on the big occasion as she wrapped up victory with an ace.
“Last year I didn’t even get into the qualifying for Wimbledon,” Flipkens said. “I was ranked No. 262. Now I’m in the semi-finals at Wimbledon.”
Bidding to become the first Belgian to win Wimbledon after compatriots Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters failed, will face Bartoli in the semi-finals after the 2007 finalist defeated Sloane Stephens 6-4 7-5.
Bartoli was booed by the crowd towards the end of the first set when, with Stephens serving to stay in the set, the No.15 seed refused to continue playing when it began to drizzle.
The crowd on Court No.1 were firmly behind Stephens when play resumed, but they were unable to inspire the American to victory as Bartoli returned to the semi-finals for the first time in six years, when she defeated top seed Henin in the last four before falling to Venus Williams in the final.
"It didn't matter much to me," Bartoli said of the crowd's hostility. "They wanted to see some tennis, and that's normal. I was feeling the courts were getting very slippery, so I felt it was more kind of a game between each other. But you know what? It's normal for them to cheer for their underdog, and I feel I did pretty well with that, as well."
Meanwhile, Serena Williams' conqueror Sabine Lisicki will face Agnieszka Radwanska, last year's runner-up and the highest-ranked player left in the draw, in the other semi-final.