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Serena and Halep advance to Wimbledon final

LONDON – Serena Williams will compete in the Wimbledon Finals for the eleventh time and seek her eighth title at the All England Club. Simona Halep will participate in her first final.

Williams, 23-time Grand Slam champion, defeated Barbora Strycova 6-1, 6-2 Thursday in the semifinal on center court, while Halep beat Elina Svitolina 6-1, 6-3.

Williams converted four of his five points to reach Saturday's final, while Strycova missed his three chances.

The 11th seeded American, who lost in last year's final, needs a major title to equal Margaret Court's record of 24.

Halep beat Svitolina three times in the first set, then again to take a 4-3 lead in the second set. She won the match with another break in the last match.

"It was not [as] easy as the mark shows, "said Halep, seventh seed, who had a 26-10 lead in the winners.

The Romanian won the French Open last year and reached the final at Roland Garros on two other occasions. She also reached the final of the Australian Open in 2018, but her best previous at the All England Club was her semifinal spot in 2014.

"It's an incredible feeling and I'm really excited – and also nervous about it," Halep said. "It's one of the best moments of my life."

Svitolina, the eighth seed, had never been in the last four of a Slam before this tournament.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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