Ram, Zvonareva oust Navratilova, advance to mixed semifinals

the Israeli/Russian duo kept playing on their way to their second straight mixed doubles semifinal appearance at a Grand Slam.

July 7, 2006 04:16
1 minute read.


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Andy Ram and Vera Zvonareva took part in Wimbledon history on Thursday, eliminating tennis legend Martina Navratilova in her final match at the All England club. And then the Israeli/Russian duo kept playing on their way to their second straight mixed doubles semifinal appearance at a Grand Slam. Ram and Zvonareva, seeded ninth, defeated eighth-seeded Navratilova and Mark Knowles of the Bahamas 7-5, 6-1 in the third round and an hour later took their positions on Center Court, where they dumped the No. 16 seeds, Frantisek Cermak of the Czech Republic and Germany's Anna-Lena Groenefeld, 6-3, 6-4 in the quarters. Their next opponents will be the winners of the quarterfinal pitting Zimbabwean siblings and No. 3 seeds Wayne Black and Cara Black against Nenad Zimonjic of Serbia and Slovenian Katarina Srebotnik, seeded seventh. Srebotnik and Zimonjic defeated Ram and Zvonareva 6-4, 6-2 in the semis at last month's French Open on their way to the title. Ram also came up short against Srebotnik and Zimonjic in the semis at last year's US Open. Ram has been defeated in each of his last three mixed doubles semifinals appearances - each time with a different partner. Ram and Zvonareva have quickly become one of the top mixed doubles pairs on the circuit, despite this being only their second event together. Ram will look to return to the Wimbledon final for the first time since 2003, when he and partner Anastasia Rodionova lost to Navratilova and Leander Paes. The other semifinal sees Americans Bob Bryan and Venus Williams take on the No 2 seeds, Max Mirnyi of Belarus and China's Jie Zheng. Ram is scheduled to return home next week to join the Davis Cup team in preparations for the upcoming Europe/Africa Zone I relegation playoff tie vs Great Britain.

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