Venus trips Ostapenko, into Wimbledon semis

LONDON — Playing at Wimbledon for the 20th time, Venus Williams is in the semifinals for the 10th time.

The five-time champion at the All England Club advanced to the last four for the second year in a row by beating Jelena Ostapenko 6-3, 7-5 Tuesday under a closed roof on Centre Court.

Williams, who is 37 years old, made her Wimbledon debut a few months before Ostapenko was born. She last won the title in 2008, but reached the semifinals last year and the Australian Open final this year.

Williams will next face either second-seeded Simona Halep or Johanna Konta on Thursday. In the other women’s semifinal match, Garbine Muguruza will play either Coco Vandeweghe or Magdalena Rybarikova.

Konta was next to play on Centre Court against Halep. On Court No. 1, Rybarikova was playing Vandeweghe.

Williams went up a break early in both sets against Ostapenko, the French Open champion. But the 20-year-old Latvian broke back in the second set and pushed the score to 5-5. A few unforced errors later, though, and Williams broke again for a 6-5 lead before serving out the match.

Williams ended up with eight aces and only 13 winners. Ostapenko had one ace and 20 winners.

She is the oldest women’s semifinalist at Wimbledon since Martina Navratilova, 37 at the time, reached the final in 1994 before losing to Conchita Martínez.

It was Williams’ 86th career victory at Wimbledon, tying her with her sister Serena for third in the Open Era. It also was the first time in her career that she had beat a player who had won the previous major.

Muguruza, the runner-up at the All England Club in 2015, beat Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-3, 6-4 to become the first player to reach the semifinals.

Muguruza won the French Open last year, but the 14th-seeded Spaniard followed up her first major title by losing in the second round at Wimbledon.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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