But Williams, who looked disappointed but still unruffled as he has been right through the tournament - so serene that a journalist couldn't resist asking whether this had something to do with motherhood - reeled off the next four points to break right back and win the match. "I think it's great what she done so far", Kerber added. This is not inevitable for me, I had a really tough delivery and multiple surgeries and nearly didn't make it to be honest.
Serena Williams is back, for real.
When Williams left the game soon after claiming her 23rd Grand Slam at the 2017 Australian Open, it appeared her streak might be under threat. In the week leading up to her first-round match against Viktoriya Tomova, Williams posted a daily countdown on Instagram that included flashback Wimbledon photos and uplifting sentiments. "We played here in the final the last time I played here in the final". "For me it's such a pleasure and a joy because, you know, less than a year ago, I was going through so much stuff". Or, more to the point on this afternoon, how such a stinging serve and groundstrokes didn't help her avoid first-round exits each of the past five years at Wimbledon. "I've been learning a lot from her".
On Saturday, just 10-and-a-half months since giving birth to her first child, Williams will take on Germany's Angelique Kerber for the chance to match Court's haul with a title at the All England Club.
Hamilton hits out at Ferrari's 'interesting tactics' after Kimi clash
The Ferrari driver had two penalty points applied to his superlicence in addition to the in-race time penalty. Hamilton sliced past him on the next lap to steal second and Raikkonen relieved him of third on lap 49.
Told that Kensington Palace had announced the Duchess would be there, Serena smiled and said: "There you go".
The 23-time Grand Slam champion beat out German player, No. 13 seed Julia Goerges, Thursday in a 6-2, 6-4 victory to advance to the women's final. Until the start of this tournament, that was the last match Williams played at Wimbledon. "For me, I only see joy out of it", Williams said with a smile. But this is different. "Yeah, I have to be ready for the match of my life".
As for her focus on winning No. 24? That's what I'm doing. It's just a number. I want to get as many as I can, starting with - I still have a match to win, so I'm not even there yet'.
However, unforced errors were her downfall and particularly costly given Williams' unerring accuracy and solid service games. "So I'm not even there yet".