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Navratilova not afraid of sisters

Who would win if Martina Navratilova played Serena or Venus Williams.

Navratilova said that at her peak, she would have liked her chances of beating either one. She also picked seven-time Wimbledon winner Steffi Graf as another who might have beaten the sisters.

"On a given day Serena could have overpowered me as she could anyone, but that's at her best," Navratilova said. "I think my average against her average would be better because I miss less."

Navratilova, 46, plays today in a mixed-doubles semifinal with Leander Paes. If she advances to the final she will play for her 20th Wimbledon title to tie the record held by Billie Jean King.

King has six singles titles, 10 in doubles and four in mixed. Navratilova has nine singles titles, seven in doubles and three mixed.

Navratilova ranks second in career titles at all the Grand Slam events with 57: 18 in singles, 31 in doubles and eight in mixed doubles. The women's record is 62, held by Margaret Smith Court (24 singles, 19 doubles, 19 mixed).

DOUBLES: Fourth-seeded Todd Woodbridge and Jonas Bjorkman won the men's doubles title Saturday, beating top-seeded Mahesh Bhupathi and Max Mirnyi 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3.

It was Woodbridge's eighth men's doubles title at Wimbledon, which ties a century-old record held by brothers Hugh and Reggie Doherty, who won eight between 1897 and 1905.

"I'm astonished to think that I could ever get close to that record," Woodbridge said. "It's beyond belief to think that at the beginning of my career I could do anything like that."

Woodbridge won six Wimbledon titles with Mark Woodforde, two with Bjorkman. It was the ninth men's doubles title for Woodbridge and Bjorkman, who won the Australian Open in '01. Woodbridge has 14 Grand Slam men's doubles titles, a record in the Open era. Bjorkman has four in men's doubles.

No. 1 seed Virginia Ruano Pascual and Paola Suarez face the No. 2 team of Kim Clijsters and Ai Sugiyama today in the women's doubles final. The play on Center Court after the men's singles final.

TRIPLE DOUBLES: Today could be a busy day for Woodbridge. He and Sventlana Kuznetsova could play as many as three rounds of mixed doubles in a backed-up schedule. Because Woodbridge was busy winning the men's doubles with Bjorkman, he didn't have time to start his mixed quarterfinal. So today he and Kuznetsova play their quarterfinal against Leos Friedl and Liezel Huber. If they win they face Paes and Navratilova. The final will be late Sunday against Andy Ram and Anastassia Rodionova.

CHAIR UMPIRE: Gerry Armstrong will be the chair umpire for the men's final, his third time to do so. He was in the chair in 1987 and '97. He also umpired two men's doubles finals, two women's singles finals and a women's doubles final.

_ TIMES WIRES

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