What's Buzzing:

Serena in Stanford last four, Venus exits

Serena Williams of the U.S. reacts during her women's singles tennis match against Alize Cornet of France at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, in London

View photo

Serena Williams of the U.S. reacts during her women's singles tennis match against Alize Cornet of …

(Reuters) - Top seed Serena Williams came from a set down to book her place in the Stanford Classic semi-finals with a hard-earned 2-6 6-3 7-5 win against fifth-seeded Serb Ana Ivanovic on Friday.

Serena, whose sister Venus was beaten in three sets by Germany's Andrea Petkovic earlier in the day, initially struggled on a fast playing surface but gradually found her range to seal victory in just under two hours.

"It wasn't very easy," Serena, who will face Petkovic in the last four on Saturday, told ESPN. "Ana plays very well. This surface was a little fast so she was hitting a lot of shots.

"But I just fought it and stayed in there. I just tried to do everything that I worked on."

Serena was broken in the first game of the match, then double-faulted to lose serve again in the fifth and trail 1-4 before losing the opening set in just under 30 minutes.

However, the American used her crunching ground strokes to great effect in the next two sets and, helped by 10 aces, she wrapped up the win when her opponent sent a forehand service return wide.

Asked how she had adjusted to the slick conditions on the hardcourt surface, Serena replied: "You just start running. You have to see faster, you have to move faster, you have to turn faster, everything you have to do just a little step faster.

"But I am feeling really good. I had some long rallies and I wasn't out of breath at all so I was like. 'Yeah'," added Serena, who suffered a surprise third round loss at Wimbledon in her previous tournament.

Earlier, the eighth-seeded Petkovic battled past Venus Williams 6-1 3-6 7-5 in a pulsating match lasting nearly two hours.

Former world number one Venus, who had upset fourth seed Victoria Azarenka in straight sets in the previous round, fought back from 6-1 and 2-0 down to level the match but the German regained control in the decisive third set.

"She played really well, and I wasn't as on today as in previous days," said Venus. "I came close, but she was just too good. She's been having a great year and she managed to play those last few games just a little bit better."

In the other two quarter-finals, third-seeded German Angelique Kerber swept aside Spaniard Garbine Muguruza Blanco 6-2 6-1 while Varvara Lepchenko crushed fellow American Sachia Vickery 6-1 6-0.

"It was a very good match for me," said Kerber. "I played good, aggressive tennis. I knew before the match it would be a tough one because she hits the ball very fast, so I was just trying to play point by point. I'm happy about my game today."

(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

View Comments (1)
  • Sunderland hires Moyes to replace Allardyce as manager

    SUNDERLAND, England (AP) -- Sunderland says it has hired former Manchester United coach David Moyes as manager, a day after Sam Allardyce left the Premier League club to take charge of England's national team. … More »

    AP - Sports - 5 minutes ago
  • Sunderland appoint Moyes as Allardyce's replacement

    Sunderland appoint Moyes as Allardyce's replacement

    (Reuters) - Sunderland named David Moyes as their new manager on Saturday, replacing Sam Allardyce who was appointed as England manager. The 53-year-old Moyes has signed a four-year contract at the Stadium of Light, the Premier League club said in a … More »

    Reuters - 15 minutes ago
  • Golf's Rio return jars environmentalists, players stay away

    Golf's Rio return jars environmentalists, players stay away

    By Pedro Fonseca RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Golf's return to the Olympic Games next month for the first time in 112 years has been marred by the absence of the sport's leading players and a court battle over potential environmental damage resulting … More »

    Reuters - 16 minutes ago
  • Rosberg signs deal to stay at Mercedes until 2018

    Rosberg signs deal to stay at Mercedes until 2018

    By Abhishek Takle BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Formula One championship leader Nico Rosberg has signed a new contract that will keep him at Mercedes with Lewis Hamilton until the end of the 2018 season, the team said on Friday. The team tweeted video of … More »

    Reuters - 21 minutes ago
  • Rooney welcomes Allardyce appointment as England manager

    (Reuters) - England captain Wayne Rooney has welcomed the appointment of Sam Allardyce as national team manager and confirmed he is not planning on retiring from international football after the country's disappointing showing at the European … More »

    Reuters - 27 minutes ago