The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

July 1, 2013

Williams loses to Lisicki in Wimbledon stunner

(Continued)

"I felt that I was on the verge of winning," she said. "At that point I just was physically unable to hold serve. ... You have to be ready and willing to hold your serve. I wasn't willing or able, probably didn't even want to hold my serve today."

Lisicki reached the semifinals at the All England Club in 2011 but this will rank as her biggest victory at the grass-court Grand Slam. She has now eliminated the reigning French Open champion the last four times she played Wimbledon, having missed the tournament in 2010. She ousted Sharapova in the fourth round last year.

Murray, facing the ever-increasing pressure to become the first British man since 1936 to win Wimbledon, was in trouble in the second set. He trailed 5-2 against Youzhny, a 2012 Wimbledon quarterfinalist, but broke back when the Russian served for the set at 5-4. Then, down 5-3 in the tiebreaker, Murray took the set's last four points. He broke immediately in the third, and cruised from there to set up a meeting with Fernando Verdasco of Spain.

Murray is the only British player left in the tournament, after 19-year-old Laura Robson lost. She couldn't recover from her missed chances in the first set and fell 7-6 (5), 7-5 to Kaia Kanepi of Estonia, failing to become the first British woman in the quarters of any Grand Slam since 1984.

Robson, the first British woman to reach the second week at Wimbledon since 1998, served for the first set at 5-4 but was broken, then led 5-2 in the tiebreaker. She double-faulted at 5-4, with neither serve coming close to going in — the first one went about 5 feet long and the second bounced into the net.

"I had my chances here and there and I just didn't take them," Robson said. "At that point, I was just trying to will myself to play unbelievable tennis when just making a serve would have been fine. But, as cliche as it sounds, it's all part of the learning experience. The more I get myself into those kinds of situations, the more I'm going to benefit."

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