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Ivanovic into Wimbledon semi-final

Ana Ivanovic overcomes the Czech Republic's Nicole Vaidisova in a three-set battle to reach her first Wimbledon semi-final.
AFP | By HT Correspondent, London
UPDATED ON JUL 05, 2007 10:04 PM IST

Ana Ivanovic revealed that she had to overcame a bout of stage fright before making it to her first Wimbledon semi-final at the expense of big-hitting Czech girl Nicole Vaidisova.

Ivanovic, the sixth seed, came from a set down and saved three match points in the ninth game of the third set before winning 4-6, 6-2, 7-5 in her first appearance on Centre Court at the All England club.

"I was really intimidated when I first stepped on the court," the 19-year-old admitted. "It was very exciting. I'd played on centre courts in Paris and the US and Australian Opens, but never here and this is a very special tournament for me.

"So I was very nervous at the beginning. Usually we have a chance to practice on centre court before we go on. But here I didn't have the chance and I never played before. It was a very strange feeling when I went on but I had great support from the crowd and as the match wore on I just tried to focus on my game."

Ivanovic's victory set her up for a semi-final clash with three-times champion Venus Williams, who has been in ominously good form in her last two matches, demolishing Maria Sharapova and Svetlana Kuznetsova in straight sets.

"It is going to be a tough match," admitted Ivanovic, who lost last month's French Open final to Justine Henin.

"Venus is in great shape and she played amazingly in her last couple of matches."

"But I have experience, I played on Centre Court already and I just want to go out and enjoy it, try to play the best I can and we'll see who will be better tomorrow."

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