But veteran 10th seed Venus appears as likely as anybody to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish on Saturday, and a 6-3 6-2 fourth-round victory over Croatian teenager Ana Konjuh was as impressive as the scoreline indicates.
Muguruza dictated proceedings in the two hour, 18-minute encounter as she struck 55 winners to Kerber's 27 while also striking 50 unforced errors, 40 more than her opponent committed. But she failed to convert them, bringing her own service games under increasing pressure and eventually losing the match 3-6, 2-6.
Ostapenko hasn't dropped a set in her last two matches, but was on the brink of defeat to former junior rival Francoise Abanda in the second round, outlasting the Canadian in three. But the Latvian, who has a forehand so powerful that it could be the envy of the men's circuit, is likely to be a far tougher opponent.
Williams remains the only previous Wimbledon champion in the draw with Serena Williams absent to prepare for the birth of her child.
"When you have somebody that it's so, you know, physically strong, so solid, the more you win free points or make it shorter, it's better", Muguruza said after the match.
There was more for the local audience to cheer for as Britain's Andy Murray overcame a hiccup in the first set, when he found himself 2-4 down to an unpredictable Benoit Paire, whose erratic French flair, makes him a hard contender.
"I just keep stretching". You're not going to play flawless every round.
After Williams secured a double break to love off the back of a resilient hold, and found herself with three match points.
The statistics captured this starkly.
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