LONDON, July 2 (Reuters) - Bespectacled Belgian outsider Kirsten Flipkins threw her name into the hat of Wimbledon’s giant-slayers as she beat 2011 champion Petra Kvitova 4-6 6-3 6-4 on a floodlit Centre Court to reach the Wimbledon semi-finals on Tuesday.
Kvitova had been the last grand slam champion left in the women’s draw but she joined the likes of Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, Victoria Azarenka and Li Na on the All England Club scrapheap after being suffocated under Centre Court’s closed roof.
All seemed on track when eighth seed Kvitova took the first set but she came unstuck in the second and called on the trainer after falling behind 5-2.
She popped a pill and had her temperature checked and although she appeared to get a second wind after surrendering the second set, a rush of blood when she charged to the net and fired a forehand volley long at break point down in the ninth game cost her dear.
Flipkins, who is known as Flipper on the tour, kept her cool to serve out a momentous victory with an ace and will next face 2007 runner-up Marion Bartoli for a place in Saturday’s final. (Reporting by Pritha Sarkar)