|Maria Sharapova of Russia|
Defending women's champion Maria Sharapova of Russia will face American Venus Williams in Thursday's Wimbledon tennis semi-final, while world number-one Lindsay Davenport of the United States faces third-seeded Amelie Mauresmo of France. All four women won their quarterfinal matches in straight-sets on Tuesday.
Sharapova was too sharp in her 7-6, 6-3 victory over Russian rival Nadia Petrova. But she's certain to be severely tested by twice-champion Venus Williams.
"She has a big game, you know, is a great fighter, so every time we play we always have really tough matches,” she said. “So I just have to go out and battle it out and see who can come out and win the fight."
A confident Venus beat Mary Piece 6-0, 7-6 -- 12 points to 10 in the tiebreaker game. Pierce was sinking like the Titanic as Venus scorched the Center Court turf with powerful drives and volleys. But at age 30, the grand old dame of the sport forced a tiebreaker before Venus clinched victory. Davenport hit the ball with crisp authority, defeating Svetlana Kuznetzova. Mauresmo had too much aggression for Anastasia Myskina.