Venus Williams needed just 49 minutes to reach the third round of the Family Circle Cup, defeating Vasilisa Bardina 6-2, 6-1 on Wednesday in a match briefly suspended because of rain.
Williams, ranked No. 29, has been slowed by a wrist injury and is playing in only her fourth tournament this year. Bardina, ranked No. 55, broke serve to open the match, but from then on had problems handling Williams' serve.
Williams, who won the Family Circle three years ago, next meets Taiwan's Chan Yung-jan, who advanced on Tuesday when Williams' sister, Serena, retired with a pulled groin.
Five top players -- Martina Hingis, Maria Sharapova, Amelie Mauresmo, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Justine Henin -- withdrew before the tournament because of injuries.
"I definitely feel like my game is coming around," Williams said. "I felt like in some of the games I'd make two or three errors and I've really got to cut back on that, but I feel confident."
Jelena Jankovic of Serbia, the highest remaining seed at No. 2, also had an easy day, defeating Anastasia Rodionova of Russia 6-1, 6-1.
Sixth-seeded Patty Schnyder of Switzerland was upset by Shuai Peng of China, 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 in the Wednesday evening match.
Earlier, fourth-seeded Dinara Safina of Russia, ranked No. 13, defeated Eleni Daniilidou of Greece 6-3, 6-4. Fifth-seeded Shahar Peer of Israel lost to Zheng Jie of China 6-2, 6-3. Ana Ivanovic of Serbia defeated Gisela Dulko of Argentina 6-0, 6-7 (5), 6-4.
Tatiana Golovin of France, who won her first tour title last week at Amelia Island, Florida, advanced to the third round with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Jill Craybas of the US.
Other second-round winners included Mara Santangelo of Italy, Lourdes Dominguez Lino of Spain, Vera Zvonareva of Russia and Anabel Medina Garrigues of Spain. Sybille Bammer of Austria advanced when Virginie Razzano of France retired with an upset stomach. Bammer was up 6-0, 3-0.
Medina Garrigues beat Francesca Schiavone of Italy 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 while Katarina Srebotnik of Slovenia defeated Aravane Rezai of France, 7-6 (3), 3-6, 7-5.
‘CRIMINAL ACT’: The UCI said it ‘strongly condemns’ Dylan Groenewegen’s ‘dangerous behavior,’ which left Jakobsen in critical condition and injured other cyclists Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen was in a coma on Wednesday, in “serious” condition, after he was thrown into and over a barrier at 80kph in the conclusion to the opening stage of the Tour de Pologne. Footage showed 23-year-old Jakobsen, of the Deceuninck-Quick-Step, racing elbow-to-elbow with fellow Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma as both men frantically tussled in a tight sprint to the line in Katowice. However, Jakobsen came off worst, somersaulting over the barriers before colliding with a photographer after Groenewegen had veered suddenly to the right, squeezing his rival into the security wall. “His condition is very serious. His life is
Taiwan Steel on Sunday grabbed three points with a narrow 1-0 win against Hang Yuan FC, to move into the No. 2 spot on the Taiwan Football Premier League (TFPL) log, while Taipower FC beat NTUS 2-0 to maintain first place. Taking advantage early in the match of opposition defenders who had not yet settled down, Taiwan Steel’s attacking trio of Wu Chun-ching, Marc Fenelus from the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Benchy Astama from Haiti pushed forward with good passes. After only one minute of play, Fenelus dribbled from the right flank, feeding a short pass inside the penalty area to
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Growing concern over health standards in e-sports has prompted a new federation to pledge to address the problem, as players fall victim to conditions ranging from wrist injuries to obesity, stress and diabetes. The retirement of top Chinese player Jian Zihao, better known by his gaming handle “Uzi,” sent tremors through the booming sport, whose revenues are predicted to reach US$1.1 billion this year, according to industry analyst Newzoo. The 23-year-old, hailed as an “icon” of the League of Legends game, stepped away from e-sports in June, saying that “chronic stress, obesity, irregular diet, staying up late and other reasons” had given