- Six-time champion Serena Williams was given a scare by Christina McHale in round two, but has been getting better and better with every round since and powered past Svetlana Kuznetsova in the last 16. Pavlyuchenkova, who had never previously been beyond the third round at Wimbledon, has impressively beaten 11th seed Timea Bacsinszky and the highly-fancied Coco Vandeweghe.
- Cibulkova won the Eastbourne title just before Wimbledon and has kept her form going at SW19, beating third seed Agnieszka Radwanska in one of the matches of the tournament. Vesnina also won her fourth-round match 9-7 in the third set, against Ekaterina Makarova.
- Fifth seed Halep has played some of her best tennis of the year to come through a tough section of the draw, beating Kiki Bertens and Madison Keys in her last two matches. Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber’s route to the quarter-finals has been far smoother and she is the only player yet to drop a set.
- Venus Williams, 36, has had to play four long matches, becoming the oldest player in 22 years to reach the women’s quarter-finals. Shvedova is the lowest-ranked woman left in the draw but has had to knock out some tough opponents, including former finalist Sabine Lisicki and the seeded Elina Svitolina and Lucie Safarova.
While Pavlyuchenkova’s results have been extremely impressive and she has already pulled off a couple of minor surprises, the challenge of facing Serena Williams on Centre Court is a completely different matter and odds of 13/2 on a shock result are fair. Vesnina, better known for her achievements in doubles, has had some luck with the way the draw has opened up for her and will find it hard to get past the in-form Cibulkova.
Halep’s clash with Kerber is perhaps the tie of the round as it puts together the two highest-remaining seeds apart from Serena. Both women are exceptional movers and defensive players and there are likely to be some stunning rallies, but if you’re looking for the best value then Halep could be the way to go as she is the slight underdog and has already had to raise her game to beat the likes of Keys, whereas Kerber remains relatively untested.
Venus Williams is the favourite to beat Shvedova and move one step closer to a potential final against her sister, but it could be that her long matches catch up with her at some stage and Shvedova is good enough to capitalise on that if her level falls. An accumulator on Serena, Cibulkova, Halep and Shvedova might be worth a look, while it could also be a good time to pick out who you think will make the final, and you can get 9/4 on Halep going on to face Serena Williams in the championship decider.
- Sports.net’s top tip: Name the Finalists - Serena Williams and Simona Halep - 9/4
*Please note, odds may fluctuate in the run-up to matches