The U.S. will compete for a gold medal in mixed doubles Sunday’s as the tandem of Venus Williams and Rajeev Ram defeated India’s Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna in a semifinal match. After splitting the first two sets, with India taking the first by a score of 6-2 and the Americans winning the second by the same score, Williams and Ram won the match tie-break 10-3.
With a win Sunday, Venus would pass sister Serena for the most Olympic gold medals won by an American tennis player as both have four. A win would also make Venus the first tennis player to have Olympic gold medals in singles, doubles and mixed doubles.
The opponents for Williams and Ram will be fellow Americans Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Jack Sock, who defeated Lucie Hradeka and Radek Stepanek in straight sets, 6-4, 7-6 (3). This will be the first time since 1924 that two Americans have met for the gold medal in tennis, with that occurring on two other occasions. Of the 20 possible points Mattek-Sands and Sock could have won on their second serve they managed to win 15 of them, producing a much better percentage (75 percent) than that of their opponents (54 percent).
That proved to be the difference, and on Sunday that duo will look to earn their first Olympic gold medals. And if they accomplish that, they’ll deny Venus Williams a record-breaking achievement.