Raymond, 39, closes on her fourth crown

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THESE have been impressive championships for Lisa Raymond, who at the age of 39 is back in a Wimbledon final.

The American and 31-year-old Brazilian Bruno Soares were admittedly top seeds in the mixed doubles, but that hardly diminishes the achievement.

This is Raymond’s 20th consecutive Wimbledon and she has won three doubles titles so far.

She and Mike Bryan won the mixed last year, and Raymond is showing no signs of slowing down.

In fact, she might just be getting better with experience.

Retiring as a singles player in 2007 must have helped.

Maybe the veterans’ scene will appeal one day, but not while this kind of success continues.

In fact, a swift glance at the women’s invitational doubles this year shows Raymond to be older than six of the competitors there, with 32-year-old Martina Hingis, 35-year-old Iva Majoli, 37-year-olds Barbara Schett and Lindsay Davenport, and 38-year-olds Lucie Ahl and Magdalena Maleeva all playing to please nostalgic crowds.

Raymond turns 40 in August, and you would be brave to back against her enjoying more success at this summer’s US Open.

She and Soares play Canadian Daniel Nestor and France’s Kristina Mladenovic today for a top prize of £92,000.

Meanwhile, Great Britain wheelchair player Jordanne Whiley will contest a Wimbledon final tomorrow when she and Japan’s Yui Kamiji tackle Aniek van Koot and Jiske Griffioen of Holland.

Whiley and Kamiji beat Britain’s Lucy Shuker and Holland’s Marjolein Buis 6-1 6-2 on Court 14 yesterday, and the new partnership is going resoundingly well, after they won a title in France last week.

Whiley was in the unusual position of facing her former doubles partner Shuker, with whom she won Paralympic bronze last year.

Yet the 23-year-old from Halesowen likes how she and Kamiji are clicking, and said: “I’m absolutely delighted to reach the final here at Wimbledon again and I can’t wait to get back on the grass courts on Sunday.

“Yui and I haven’t played much together but we remain undefeated and we’re forming a really strong partnership.

“It was certainly strange having Lucy on the other side of the court.

“But I had to put that out of my mind and just treat it like any other match.”