Spaniards Look for Two Slams in a Row
Published June 30, 2009 06:45
LONDON, UK - Most of the big names in the doubles draw at the All-England Club are still alive and will be in quarterfinal action Wednesday, including the Top 4 seeded teams.
It has not been a smooth ride so far for Cara Black and Liezel Huber, especially in their three set triumph over Iveta Benesova and Barbora Zahlavova Strycova in the round of 16. However, the No.1 seeds, co-ranked No.1 in the world, must like their chances of advancing to the final four, as they have a 3-0 record against their quarterfinal opponents, 11th-seeded Spaniards Nuria Llagostera Vives and María José Martínez Sánchez, who have three Sony Ericsson WTA Tour titles as a duo this year. Black and Huber have 26 career Tour titles together, including two Wimbledons.
The winner of that match will face the winner of the clash between No.4 seeds Venus Williams and Serena Williams and No. 12 seeds Anna-Lena Groenefeld and Vania King. The Williams sisters are the obvious favorites, considering they are three-time Wimbledon doubles champs and have only lost a total of 11 games in their three matches so far, including a double bagel in their last match.
On the bottom half of the draw, unseeded Kristina Barrois and Tathiana Garbin, who are playing their first Wimbledon as a duo, will take on third-seeded Samantha Stosur and Rennae Stubbs. The Australians, who are looking for their first Tour title together after uniting at the beginning of this year, have yet to drop a set this fortnight. Stubbs has won Wimbledon previously once each with Lisa Raymond and Black.
Another unseeded team, Alisa Kleybanova and Ekaterina Makarova, will be the underdogs against No.2 seeds Anabel Medina Garrigues and Virginia Ruano Pascual. The Russians, who won their first Tour doubles title together at Fès in May, had their most impressive result of the fortnight so far in the previous round, knocking off 10th-seeded Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Nadia Petrova. Meanwhile, despite being tested in each of their three matches, Spaniards Medina Garrigues and Ruano Pascual are having their best Wimbledon together, having been defeated in the round of 16 twice previously. The two-time defending Roland Garros champs are looking for their first major elsewhere.