Serena Williams is last American left in singles


LONDON — Serena Williams remained the last U.S. singles tennis player standing at the Olympics on Thursday at Wimbledon. But John Isner gave it a great try, losing to yet another Roger Federer magic moment.

Williams coasted past former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark, 6-0, 6-3, continuing her dominance of the women’s bracket. She hit 30 winners, including six aces, and will face off in the semifinals against current No. 1 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus. Azarenka beat Germany’s Angelique Kerber, 6-4, 7-5.

Isner, the 6-foot-9 rising U.S. men’s star, stretched No. 1 Federer but lost, 6-4, 7-6 (5). The final point of the tiebreaker may be an omen for what is ahead here. Isner served on the first match point of the match and Federer hit a backhand that clipped the net cord and fell over for the winning point.

“I felt bad, but relieved,” Federer said of the lucky shot. “The whole big serving thing [of Isner] was over.”

It was Isner’s first match on Wimbledon’s Centre Court, but certainly not his first experience at Wimbledon. In 2010, he and Nicolas Mahut of France played a record three-day marathon, on Court 18, that ended with a 70-68 fifth-set victory for Isner.

Also on Thursday, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic made his way into the men’s semifinal opposite Britain’s Andy Murray and Argentine Juan Martin del Potro drew the next straw against Federer in the other semifinal.

Maria Sharapova outlasted Belgium’s Kim Clijsters for the other women’s semifinal spot opposite Maria Kirilenko. Sharapova and Kirilenko are Russian.

The U.S. remained medal contenders in doubles. In the men’s, No. 1 Bob and Mike Bryan advanced to the semifinals, as did Venus and Serena Williams, and Lisa Raymond and Liezel Huber in the women’s. In the mixed, Raymond and Mike Bryan are still alive.

Badminton: China continued its relentless march to more medals as play headed toward the finals. In men’s singles, two of the four are from China. In men’s doubles, only one of the four remaining is from China with the others from Malaysia, Denmark and South Korea. In women’s singles, three of the final four are from China. It’s China vs. Japan in the women’s doubles final and both teams in the mixed doubles final are from China.

Beach volleyball: Two U.S. teams finished undefeated as pool play came to a close. Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser beat Premysi Kubala and Petr Benes of the Czech Republic, 21-13, 21-15. The women’s team of April Ross and Jennifer Kessy had a little more difficult time beating Liliana Fernandez Steiner and Elsa Baquerizo McMillan of Spain, 21-19, 19-21, 19-17.

Canoe/kayak: In a bit of a shocker, three-time defending Olympic champions Pavol and Peter Hochschorner of Slovakia had to settle for bronze in the men’s canoe double slalom. And what might be a bigger surprise is that teams from Britain took the top two spots. Tim Baillie and Etienne Stott got the gold, beating David Florence and Richard Hounslow by 0.36 of a second. In the women’s kayak slalom, the winner was Emilie Fer of France, followed by Jessica Fox of Australia and Maialen Chourraut of Spain.

Cycling: Britain, known for its prowess in sitting sports, kept that reputation alive with a gold in men’s team sprint. The Brits broke their world record when they beat France in the final. The winning team was made up of Philip Hinds, Jason Kenny and Chris Hoy. Germany got the bronze by beating Australia. In the women’s team sprint, Germany won when the Chinese team was disqualified for an illegal lane change. Australia beat Ukraine in the bronze-medal race.

Fencing: Italy beat defending Olympic champion Russia to win the women’s team foil. The winning team was made up of Arianna Errigo, Valentina Vezzali and Elisa Di Francisca, who won her second gold medal. South Korea won the bronze by beating France. The U.S. team of Lee Kiefer, Nzingha Prescod and Nicole Ross finished sixth.

Field hockey: In women’s play, the United States, fresh off an upset over Argentina, lost to Australia, 1-0. In other games, South Korea beat Japan, 1-0, Netherlands topped China, 1-0, Britain shut out Belgium, 3-0, Germany stopped South Africa, 2-0, and Argentina defeated New Zealand, 2-1.

Sailing: The men’s star has two races left before the medal race and it’s unlikely the U.S. team of Mark Mendelblatt and Brian Faith can reach the podium. They finished fifth and 10th in their two races and sit in sixth place. Britain is leading. In the 49er class, Erik Storck and Trevor Moore had 20th- and 18th-place finishes and sit in 13th. Australia is the leader. On the first day of the men’s 470, the U.S. team of Stuart Mcnay and Graham Biehl finished 17th and 22nd and are in 20th place. Britain is the leader. In men’s Finn, after eight races Zach Railey is in 12th. Robert Willis is in 18th place in men’s windsurfer and Farrah Hall is in 20th on the women’s side. Finally, in the Elliot 6-meter round-robin, Anna Tunnicliffe and Molly Vandemoer are in fourth with two races remaining.

Shooting: Britain picked up its first gold in 12 years in the double trap when Peter Wilson hit 188 out of 200 traps. Hakan Dahlby of Sweden got the silver and Vasily Mosin of Russia the bronze. U.S. shooters Joshua Richmond (16th) and Glenn Eller (22nd) did not make it to the final round. Eller was the 2008 Olympic champion.

Table tennis: An all-China final saw Zang Jike beating Wang Hao, 4-1. Dimitrij Ovtcharov of Germany got the bronze. China has won 22 of 26 gold medals since the sport was introduced.