Donna Vekic eclipses Lulu Sun to reach first Wimbledon semi-final

Donna Vekic Eclipses Lulu Sun To Reach First Wimbledon Semi-Final
A smiling Donna Vekic covers her eyes with her hand as she celebrates victory, © PA Wire/PA Images
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By Andy Sims, PA

Donna Vekic ended the fairy tale Wimbledon run of qualifier Lulu Sun to reach her first grand slam semi-final.

Sensation Sun won the first set and looked on course to become only the second woman to come through qualifying and reach the last four.


But Vekic, the 28-year-old from Croatia, took a tight second set and then ran away with the third for a 5-7 6-4 6-1 victory.

“It was a really tough match, she played unbelievable, I feel like she really pushed me to my limits,” said an emotional Vekic.

“I felt like I was dying out there in the first two sets, but I just kept going, hoping to have a chance, and it came in the end.


“I have a full box of people there, and I wouldn’t be here without them.”

Sun has nonetheless lit up this year’s Championship with her fearless tennis as well as her apt surname, given that is frustratingly what has been missing from this rain-sodden tournament.

With the roof closed on Court One yet again, the 23-year-old New Zealander found herself under early pressure but saved three break points in a marathon, 10-deuce fourth game.


Having survived that, Sun began to attack the Vekic serve and it told when she broke for 6-5 before a gutsy hold clinched the set.

Sun looked by far the more composed player but Vekic gathered herself in the second set and secured a break in the eighth game.

But the nerves were still showing, and three double faults at deuce gave Sun three break points.

Lulu Sun holds out her hands in frustration
Lulu Sun’s run came to an end (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

Vekic saved the first two but then dunked an ill-advised drop shot into the net to gift Sun the game.

However, when a set point arrived in the next game on the Sun serve the drop shot worked a treat and the match was level.

Sun was playing her eighth match of the fortnight, and it showed at the start of the third set as Vekic won 12 straight points.

In the blink of an eye it was 5-0, and despite gamely getting on the board, Sun finally went down at Wimbledon in two hours and eight minutes.

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