Wimbledon 2016: Serena Williams beats Svetlana Kuznetsova

Wimbledon 2016: Spills and thrills in Williams win over Kuznetsova
Wimbledon on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 27 June-10 July
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Six-time champion Serena Williams overcame a first-set blip to reach Wimbledon's last eight with a straight-sets win over Svetlana Kuznetsova.

Williams, 34, defeated the Russian 7-5 6-0 to set up a quarter-final with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

Kuznetsova failed to serve out the first set and before rain halted play the top seed was far from her best.

But under the Centre Court roof, Williams was supreme, winning eight games on the trot to secure victory.

From trailing 3-1, two-time Grand Slam champion Kuznetsova twice broke Williams' serve for a chance to serve for the set, but the defending champion immediately broke back to level at 5-5 before play was suspended because of light rain.

When the players returned to the court the roof had been closed and the indoor conditions favoured Williams' big serve, with Kuznetsova failing to win a game as the world number one confidently secured the first set and, without further loss of a game, the match.

Lindsay Davenport, 1999 Wimbledon champion
"There are certain wins that you just go through in the course of a Grand Slam and then there are statement wins. That was a statement win by Serena.
"When they came back when the roof was closed it was probably the best eight games I've seen Serena play in quite some time.
"She was serving big and dominating play. She looked unbeatable in the second part of this match. She had 43 winners to just 14 unforced errors. That is amazing."

Serena shrugs off schedule

"She has played really well against me in the past and beat me earlier this year so I knew I had to play well to win," Williams told BBC Sport.

"It was really tricky out there. It wasn't raining hard but was dewy and on the grass you can fall easily - then you think 'should I run or not' and it became more difficult because of that."

Having played on middle Sunday, Williams will now play on three successive days at SW19.

"In order to win a tournament you usually have to play quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals back-to-back," said Williams.

"So I thought 'Serena, you have done this over 70, 80 times', so for me it is an easy transition."

Serena Williams
The cornerstone of Williams' success throughout her career has been the quality of her first serve. At this year's Championships she has won more first serve points (77%) than any of the other quarter-finalists and, more impressively, 51% of her first serves have not even been returned by her opponents. The Hawk-Eye graphic illustrates the success of each of her first serves this tournament. Her most successful serve by a considerable margin has been the serve out wide on the ad court, and incredibly she has won 94% of the points behind it.

Venus fights back to reach quarters

Joining the defending champion in the last eight is her sister Venus, the five-time champion.

She beat Spain's Carla Suarez Navarro 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 on Court One to progress to the last eight at Wimbledon for the first time since 2010.

The 36-year-old, who last won the title at SW19 in 2008, lost her opening two service games to trail 3-0 but fought back to take the first set to a tie-break, which she led 4-2 before rain stopped play.

When the match resumed the American confidently wrapped up the tie-break and then broke her opponent's serve in the third game of the second set.

Although Navarro levelled at 3-3, Williams immediately broke again in the next game and served out to take the second set and the match after an hour and 35 minutes. She will next play Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan.

Venus Williams
Venus Williams is the oldest quarter-finalist in the ladies' singles at SW19 for 22 years

Best of the rest

In one of the matches of the tournament, Dominika Cibulkova beat Agnieszka Radwanska 6-3 5-7 9-7 in a thrilling dual that lasted nearly three hours.

Cibulkova will play Russia's Elena Vesnina in the next round.

Wimbledon 2016: Cibulkova wins epic match over Radwanska

Fifth seed Simona Halep will come up against fourth seed Angelique Kerber of Germany in the quarter-finals after seeing off Madison Keys 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 6-3.

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