Virginie Razzano advances to WTA quarter-finals

College Park: Virginie Razzano, still coping with the death of her coach-fiancé, ousted British sixth seed Elena Baltacha 6-4, 6-2 to reach the quarter-finals of a USD 220,000 WTA tournament.

The 81st-ranked Frenchwoman would reach her first WTA semi-final in more than two years with a victory on Friday over 102nd-ranked Irina Falconi of the United States at the hardcourt event, an early tuneup event for the US Open.

"I played a great match," Razzano said. "I`m feeling good with my tennis. I was very serious, focused on my game. I was able to concentrate on my goals from the start."

Razzano fought through her sorrow at an emotional French Open appearance in May barely a week after the death of Stephane Vidal, her coach for 11 years, due to a brain tumour.

"I`m feeling strong," Razzano said. "I don`t have stress, just good stress going on the court.”

"When I lost my fiancé, who for me was the most important thing in my life, and then you go to play a tennis match, it`s not very important. When you play matches, it`s just my job."

Razzano, 28, had not won back-to-back matches since Vidal`s death until downing Baltacha. She said every victory is a tribute to their time together.

"For me it is (a tribute) already done, because I won two matches in a row. He is happy because I made a good start, played two very good matches," she said. "The more I win matches there is more confidence for me.”

"I`m going positively. Go to win. I win for him and for me. First for him, then for me."