Clijsters, Sharapova, Ivanovic move to semi-finals
Cincinnati: Reigning US Open champion Kim Clijsters, former world No. 1 Ana Ivanovic and Russian beauty Maria Sharapova have reached the WTA Cincinnati Open semi-finals with straight-set triumphs.
Belgian fourth seed Clijsters, who made her return to tennis at this event last year ahead of her second Grand Slam title at the US Open, ousted Italy’s Flavia Pennetta 7-6 (8/6), 6-4, to book a semi-final date with Ivanovic.
Clijsters, who had taken a two-year break to start a family, fired seven aces and connected on 67 percent of her first serves but the Italian would not go out easily, saving 11 of 14 break-point chances by Clijsters.
“There are moments when it’s good, moments when it’s not good,” she said. “Each match has gone better. That’s what I’m looking for.”
Serbia’s Ivanovic dominated without facing a break point in a 6-1, 6-3 triumph over 114th-ranked qualifier Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan that lasted just 56 minutes at the two million-dollar hardcourt event.
The 26-year-old Uzbek had ousted Serbian top seed Jelena Jankovic on Thursday.