Lucie storms into Wimbledon semifinal

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Lucie stormed into her first Grand Slam semifinal as the Czech 23rd seed thrashed Russia’s Ekaterina Makarova 6-3, 6-1 at Wimbledon on Tuesday. She was playing in her first quarterfinal at the majors since the 2007 Australian Open and showed no signs of being overawed in a ruthless 57-minute rout of the 22nd seed on Court One.

Safarova will play one of her compatriots in the last four as she is scheduled to meet the winner of Tuesday’s all-Czech quarterfinal between Petra Kvitova, the 2011 Wimbledon champion, and world number 43 Barbora Zahlavova Strycova. It will be the first time two Czech women have advanced to the semifinals at the same Grand Slam since Hana Mandlikova and Helena Sukova at the 1986 French Open.

Lucka took less than an hour to win the battle of the left-handers, the Czech establishing her dominance early by breaking Makarova’s serve in the second game and maintaining her lead with some strong serving of her own. Makarova managed just three break points for the match, two of which were saved by confident Safarova aces. She served eight for the match, with 24 winners to Makarova’s seven further highlighting her confident display. With Makarova unable to establish the rhythm that saw her upset Agnieszka Radwanska yesterday, Safarova secured three breaks of serve in the 26-minute second set.

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