Sat, Apr 14, 2007 - Page 20 News List

Taiwanese ace proves no match for Venus Williams

COMING ON STRONG The unseeded American player needed just over an hour to beat Chan Yung-jan as she continued her comeback from a serious wrist injury


Taiwan's Chan Yung-jan reacts as she misses a shot during her match against Venus Williams in the third round of the Family Circle Cup tournament in Charleston, South Carolina, on Thursday.


Venus Williams cruised into the Family Circle Cup quarter-finals on Thursday, routing Taiwan's Chan Yung-jan (詹詠然) 6-2, 6-1.

Williams, unseeded and in her fourth tournament since recovering from a wrist injury earlier in the year, needed just over an hour to win the match on a bright, breezy day on the green clay at Daniel Island.

In yesterday's quarter-finals, Williams, ranked No. 29, was due to face Anabel Medina Garrigues of Spain, a 6-4, 7-5 winner over eighth-seeded Li Na of China.

Williams won in Memphis in her return, advanced to the third round in Miami and made the quarter-finals last week at Amelia Island.

"I've been off so long and I'm eager to play and I'm eager to get my ranking up and I want to play matches," she said. "I'm excited about the snowball effect."

Second-seeded Jelena Jankovic of Serbia, ranked No. 9 and the highest remaining seed in the US$1.3 million event, had an even easier time than Williams.

Jankovic defeated Mara Santangelo of Italy 6-3, 6-0 in 47 minutes, losing only six points in the second set. It's Jankovic's fourth appearance in Charleston, but until this week she never survived the second round. Last year, Jankovic lost to a qualifier.

Jankovic will meet Katrina Srebotnik of Slovenia, a 7-5, 7-6 (5), winner over Zheng Jie of China, in the quarter-finals.

Fourth-seeded Dinara Safina of Russia also won in straight sets, defeating Lourdes Dominguez Lino of Spain, 6-2, 6-2. Safina will face Tatiana Golovin of France, a 6-2, 4-6, 6-3 winner over Peng Shaui of China.

Michaella Krajicek of the Netherlands, who earlier this week defeated the tournament's top-seed, Nicole Vaidisova, also advanced with a 6-7 (4), 6-2, 6-1 win over Sybille Bammer of Austria.

She will meet ninth-seeded Vera Zvonareva of Russia, who defeated seventh-seeded Ana Ivanovic of Serbia, 6-3, 6-3 in the Thursday night match.


James Blake booked his quarter-final berth in the US$416,000 US claycourt championships in Houston on Thursday with a straight sets win over qualifier Alex Kuznetsov.

Blake, who is shaking off a run of disappointing results, defeated Kuznetsov 7-6, (7/4), 6-1 to line up a clash with eighth-seeded Argentinine Juan Monaco.

Monaco defeated American Amer Delic 6-2, 6-3.

Blake had been struggling before he posted a pair of victories against Spain last weekend in the Davis Cup -- the second in a dead rubber.

However, he appears to be returning to the early season form that saw him reach two finals -- including a successful title defense in Sydney.

Monaco also has a title to his credit this year, having picked up his first career ATP trophy in Buenos Aires.

In this tournament, Blake is seeking to make it past the quarter-finals for the first time in six appearances.

Third-seeded German Tommy Haas also advanced to the quarter-finals, with a 6-2, 6-4 victory over France's Nicolas Devilder.

Haas next faces Croatian Ivo Karlovic, who advanced on a walkover when Argentina's Diego Hartfield withdrew with a neck injury.

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