Wimbledon: Garbine Muguruza reaches semi-finals

Johanna Konta learned her imitable style in Spain

Johanna Konta learned her imitable style in Spain

All these years later, Wimbledon still brings out the best in Venus Williams. "Today I stepped on court super confident and everything went well", 14th seeded Muguruza said. I play a lot of slices. "I wanted to acknowledge the crowd".

Two years ago Muguruza reached her first Grand Slam final at Wimbledon, but she ultimately fell to Serena Williams.

Indeed, she was simply stronger in every department, hitting 22 winners and just 11 unforced errors as she won 60 points to Rybarikova's 33 with her backhand down the line, fundamental to her win. Now a more experienced Muguruza has another chance at the top prize, playing against older Williams sister, Venus.

In this battle of power servers, there was little to differentiate the two in terms of average speeds - their first serves at exactly 104mph apiece and their second serves in the early nineties. 'I was dreaming about it since I was a kid, ' she said.

"They could have really been even more boisterous. I wish she could do this for me". I did think of that. She knows how to prepare, how to train. Now she stands on the precipice of winning her sixth Wimbledon title, her eight Grand Slam and her first since 2008. Conchita Martinez, who is Muguruza's Fed Cup coach and the last Spanish female to win a Wimbledon title, is working with the 23 year old in London.

Last May, she chose to play an ITF 100K in Trnava, just half an hour from Bratislava, though she couldn't hit clean backhands.

Johanna Konta admits her first thought after losing her Wimbledon semi-final to Venus Williams was: "Damn, I'm done".

Asked what was going through her head at the finish, Konta said: "Damn, I'm done".

It was Serena who beat Muguruza in the 2015 finale at SW19. Konta played so well, no point was easy. You couldn't take the smile off her face, though there was no pirouette like when she downed CoCo Vandeweghe in the Melbourne semifinals.

Andy Murray did not look amused when he corrected the journalists
Andy Murray did not look amused when he corrected the journalists

Konta, whose climb up the rungs of the tennis ladder has been nothing short of extraordinary - having gone from a WTA ranking of 150 at the end of 2014 to seven before this match - had both the firepower and the mental strength to challenge Williams.

Trailing 4-0, Rybarinkova needed 10 minutes to hold serve for only the second time and avoid a humiliating Centre Court bagel.

The 26-year-old was level pegging with Williams for much of a tightly contested opening set until cracking in the 10th game.

Down two break points at 4-4, Williams produced a serve out wide, backhand victor combination. Jo gave it her all.

Deliberately taking her time between points and games, Venus was doing her best to throw Konta out of her rhythm.

"What we have to remember is Konta had never been past the second round at Wimbledon until this year". Konta went from 0-40 to 30-40 on serve but was broken on the third break point. I tried to do the things she would do.

But it was Williams who left as the victor on the day. "I'm sure to a certain extent, definitely", Konta said. They have also played on grass before, that match coming in 2015 in Birmingham.

"So I look forward to putting a Spanish name back there".

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