No.2 seeds Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina survived a three-set thriller to beat dynamic Aussie duo Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua to put themselves two wins from a maiden Wimbledon title.
WTA Staff

LONDON, Great Britain - Olympic Gold medalists Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina made it past in-form Aussies Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua, toppling the No.8 seeds, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

Two-time major champions at Roland Garros and the US Open, the Russians reached the quarterfinals at the first two Grand Slam tournaments of 2017, winning the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships and finishing runner-up at the Brisbane International and the Internazionali BNL d'Italia.

Barty and Dellacqua were once the talk of the doubles tour back in 2013, reaching three major finals in one season before injuries and temporary retirements took each off the tour.

Reuniting at the start of the year after nearly 12 months apart, their partnership kicked into high gear when they won nine straight matches on clay, winning the Internationaux de Strasbourg and making it all the way into the French Open final.

Picking up another title at the Aegon Classic in Birmingham, the Aussies gritted through two opening rounds before dispatching Elise Mertens and Demi Schuurs in straight sets to reach their third straight Grand Slam quarterfinal.

Makarova and Vesnina broke serve in the opening game of the match to ultimately take the first set, and dropped serve in the final game of the second to level the match - after 18 straight service holds in between.


😄👍 @vesnushka86 @wimbledon #ekaterinamakarova #elenavesnina

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The final set was equally tense as the teams traded easy holds before the No.2 seeds converted the only break point of the decider to take the match after one hour and 49 minutes on court.

Awaiting them in the semifinals is a surprise as No.12 seeds Anna-Lena Groenefeld and former World No.1 Kveta Pescke stunned No.3 seeds Chan Yung-Jan and Martina Hingis, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.

Hingis seemed to strike gold with her latest partner, winning four titles in 2017 and riding a seven match winning streak into the quarterfinals.

Groenefeld and Peschke enjoyed a phenomenal partnership - winning eight titles between 2012 and 2014 - and reunited in 2016 on a more permanent basis, winning the J&T Banka Prague Open earlier this spring.

Makarova and Vesnina played Groenefeld and Peschke just once in 2017, dropping just two games to the pair at the Miami Open in March.

The top half of the draw features No.9 seeds Chan Hao-Ching and Monica Niculescu, who will play Makoto Ninomiya and Renata Voracova for a spot in what would be a first Grand Slam final in women's doubles for all four women - Chan was finalist in Wimbledon's mixed doubles event in 2014.

Elena Vesnina, Ekaterina Makarova, Wimbledon, The Championships