Kichenok, Pavic win Wimbledon mixed doubles

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LONDON — Ukrainian Elina Svitolina’s bid to win the Wimbledon singles fell short on Thursday but her war-torn nation could still celebrate a Grand Slam champion as Lyudmyla Kichenok and Croatian partner Mate Pavic later won the mixed doubles.

Kichenok, 30, and Pavic, seeded seventh, beat Belgium’s Joran Vliegen and China’s Xu Yifan 6-4, 6-7 (9), 6-3.

“I try to encourage the people in Ukraine and I hope this helps a little because they are fighting for their freedom,” Kichenok said to a huge ovation from the Centre Court crowd.

“This feels amazing, I want to thank my partner for playing incredible in this two weeks.”

Former doubles world number one Pavic, also 30, adds the Wimbledon mixed doubles titles to five other Grand Slam doubles titles, three in men’s and two in mixed.

Earlier on Thursday, wildcard Svitolina was beaten 6-3, 6-3 by Czech Marketa Vondrousova in the women’s semifinals.

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