Serena reaches Miami SFs with 700th win

Miami, FL ( – Seven-time champion Serena Williams was a
hard-fought quarterfinal winner and recorded her 700th career match win
in the process Wednesday at the $5.3 million Miami Open tennis event.

A celebratory cake was brought onto the court for Williams after the match.

“I had no idea,” Williams said of the milestone. “I saw them bringing out a
cake and I thought, ‘Whose birthday is it today?’ But I really had no idea
about it, so I’m really excited right now!”

The world No. 1 superstar was tested mightily in a 7-6 (7-4), 1-6, 6-3
decision against 27th-seeded German Sabine Lisicki on the hardcourts at
Crandon Park. Williams needed just over two hours to move on, which she did
despite having her powerful serve broken six times.

Williams has won her last 19 matches on tour and 16 straight matches in Miami.

“I wasn’t playing my best today,” Williams said afterwards. “But some days
you’re just off, and that’s when you have to fight. Even if I lost today, if I
just gave 100 percent then I wouldn’t have been upset.”

Lisicki stunned Williams in a fourth-round affair at Wimbledon two years ago.
The American, however, now leads their lifetime series 3-1.

The incomparable Williams has appeared in nine Miami Open finals, going 7-2 in
those title tilts.

The 33-year-old reigning Australian and U.S. Open champ beat since-retired
Li Na in last year’s finale for a second straight title in “Magic City.”

The 19-time Grand Slam titlist will meet red-hot third-seeded Romanian star
Simona Halep or fellow American Sloane Stephens in Thursday’s semifinals. Last
year’s French Open runner-up Halep has won her last 13 matches on tour, which
includes a title at Indian Wells prior to this Miami fortnight.

Halep and Stephens have split four career meetings on the WTA circuit.

The other semi will pit ninth-seeded German Andrea Petkovic against 12th-
seeded Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro.