Serena Williams beats Petra Kvitova to reach Wimbledon semifinals

US player Serena Williams celebrates her women's singles

US player Serena Williams celebrates her women's singles quarter-final victory over Czech Republic's Petra Kvitova on day eight of the 2012 Wimbledon Championships tennis tournament at the All England Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London. (July 3, 2012) (Credit: Getty Images)

WIMBLEDON, England -- Thanks to a bit of advice from her big sister and a bunch of aces from her big serve, Serena Williams is back in the Wimbledon semifinals. With two more victories, she will be holding a major singles trophy for the first time in two years.

With the thud of racket against ball reverberating beneath the closed Centre Court roof, Williams hit 13 aces at up to 120 mph to overpower defending champion Petra Kvitova, 6-3, 7-5, in the quarterfinals yesterday at the All England Club.

Beforehand, Williams' father and coach, Richard, asked his other title-winning daughter to relay some suggestions.

"Venus can get [through] to Serena better than anyone in the world. So I told Venus, 'I'm not going to talk to her. You talk to her.' When the match was over, I told her, 'Venus: Good coaching! Good coaching!' " Richard Williams said. "I wanted Serena to move her feet a little bit more and to not concentrate on what the girl's doing, but concentrate exactly on what she wished to do. And that was the only message."

Williams, 30, is bidding to become the first woman at least that age to win a major singles title since Martina Navratilova at Wimbledon in 1990.

Kvitova, seeded fourth, had won 11 matches in a row at Wimbledon since losing to Williams in a 2010 semifinal. Two days later, Serena won her fourth Wimbledon title.

Thursday, the sixth-seeded Williams faces No. 2 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus, who beat Tamira Paszek, 6-3, 7-6 (4). The other semi is No. 3 Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland against No. 8 Angelique Kerber of Germany. Radwanska won, 7-5, 4-6, 7-5, over No. 17 Maria Kirilenko. Kerber beat No. 15 Sabine Lisicki, 6-3, 6-7 (7), 7-5 .

Wednesday's's men's quarterfinals are: No. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. Florian Mayer, No. 3 Roger Federer vs. Mikhail Youzhny, Andy Murray vs. David Ferrer and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs. Philipp Kohlschreiber. The last two American men lost. No. 10 Mardy Fish fell to Tsonga, 4-6, 7-6 (4), 6-4, 6-4, and No. 126 Brian Baker was beaten by Kohlschreiber, 6-1, 7-6 (4), 6-3.

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