Another shocker

Serena williams knocked out of wimbledon ending her winning streak

LONDON — World number one Serena Williams saw her winning streak and hopes of a sixth Wimbledon title end with a shock defeat by Germany’s Sabine Lisicki today.

Lisicki, the 23rd seed, won the fourth-round encounter 6-2 1-6 6-4 on Centre Court. Williams joins leading names Maria Sharapova, Victoria Azarenka, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in making an early exit at what has been a tournament of stunning upsets.

It was only the third defeat in the last year for Williams, and ends her career-best winning run of 34 matches, but she insisted afterwards: “It’s not a shock. “She plays really good on grass. She has a massive, massive serve, so going in there you have to know that it’s definitely not going to be an easy match playing her at Wimbledon, especially on Centre Court. “It’s definitely not a shock. I just need to do better.” Lisicki moves on to the quarter-finals for the fourth time and in each of those Wimbledon campaigns she has beaten the French Open champion. In another game Andy Murray raced into the quarter-finals of Wimbledon with a straight sets victory over Mikhail Youzhny.

The Russian’s unorthodox game presented a different challenge to the second seed, but after a second set wobble the Briton secured a 6-4 7-6 6-1 success. Murray broke for a 2-1 lead against last year’s quarter-finalist and while not playing as well as he had in the previous round against Tommy Robredo, still had enough to take the set. But Youzhny, adopting a skidding backhand slice for much of the time, frustrated the Scot and upset his rhythm to the extent that, at 2-5 in the second set he looked like levelling the match. A double-fault had handed Youzhny a double-break at 4-2 and then he served to move within a game of tying it up, but Murray, appearing to be troubled by a hip problem, stopped the rot and then broke back with a stinging forehand pass. He then secured a second break at the third time of asking with a sizzling cross-court backhand before moving into a tie-break.

A tame double-fault handed Youzhny a 4-2 lead but a forehand wide from the Russian gave Murray his first set point, which he took in style with a stunning backhand return to clinch it 7-5. Winning the set had a galvanising effect on the crowd favourite while world No 20 Youzhny opted to call the trainer to attend to a troublesome shoulder. Whether it was affecting him badly was a moot point, but it meant little as Murray moved through the gears as he raced through the final set to put the problems of the first two hours on court firmly behind him. Fernando Verdasco of Spain awaits in the quarter-finals after the world No 54 came through in straight sets against Kenny De Schepper.

Verdasco, who has never been past the fourth round at SW19, won an impressive 86 percent of points on his first serve and broke four times in the match as Frenchman De Schepper went down 6-4 6-4 6-4. Murray holds an 8-1 record in their previous meetings although they haven’t played each other since 2009. Meanwhile World number one Novak Djokovic eased into the quarter-finals with a 6-1 6-4 7-6(4) win over Tommy Haas this evening.

Djokovic dominated the match from the outset, breaking Haas in the first game of the first set before repeating the feat in Haas’s next service game to race into a 4-0 lead.

The German managed to hold on to his next serve but was broken again in the seventh game as Djokovic took a comfortable 6-1 win in the first set.

Haas put up more of a fight in the second, breaking Djokovic in the fifth game to gain the advantage, but the Serb fought back and broke Haas twice in succession to take the set 6-4.

Djokovic broke Haas again in the sixth game of the third set having only dropped two points on his own serve up to that point.

Haas fought back with his first break of the match as Djokovic looked to serve for the win, forcing a tiebreak that Djokovic eventually won 7-4 to book his place in the next round.

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