Thursday, March 31, 2011

Vera aproaching Miami final, and No. 2 rank.

Vera Zvonareva advanced to her second semi-final at the Sony Ericsson Open with her 7-5, 6-3 win over No. 9 seed Agnieszka Radwanska. This is the third semi-final appearance of the year for the No. 3 seeded Russian, who reached the same round at both Pattaya City and the Australian Open, where she lost to eventual champion Kim Clijsters.

Zvonareva won five break points in the match against the Radwanska, who also reached the quarter-finals of Miami last year, and the Australian Open earlier this year. “I had to take my chances today,” said Zvonareva in the post-match on-court interview. She attacked the net a number of times often after chasing down Radwanska’s numerous drop shots. “I’m really happy the way I played and the way I came into the net,” she said.

Despite hitting only 53% of her first serves, Zvonareva had 27 winners to Radwanska’s five, and closed out the match in 94 minutes. After today’s challenge, Zvonareva said she will “try to recover the best I can to play good tennis tomorrow.”

If Clijsters also advances to the semi-final, it will be the 11th meeting with the Russian player, five of which occurred since last year’s Wimbledon. Clijsters has the edge, 7-3 overall, but Zvonareva won three of these past five meetings. She and Azarenka split their four matches in 2010, but Zvonareva is 6-2 in career meetings.

Zvonareva could surpass Clijsters at No.2 if she goes on to win the title here.

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