Fri, Mar 18, 2011 - Page 19 News List

France’s Bartoli finally breaks through to semis


Marion Bartoli serves during her match against Ana Ivanovic on Wednesday in Indian Wells, California.

Photo: AFP

Marion Bartoli, who is the oldest player left in the draw, defeated former world No.1 Ana Ivanovic to become the first woman to reach the Indian Wells semi-finals.

The 26-year-old Frenchwoman broke through to the semis for the first time in nine appearances as she beat Ivanovic 6-4, 7-6 (7/4) on Wednesday.

Bartoli finished off the 2008 Indian Wells champion Ivanovic with a overhead forehand winner to end the match.

In the night match, Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer defeated Shahar Peer of Israel 6-3, 6-3 to reach her first semi-final in Indian Wells.

In the men’s tournament Rafael Nadal beat qualifier Somdev Devvarman 7-5, 6-4 to reach the quarterfinals.

The world’s top-ranked player dominated his first two matches, dropping just six games, but he was challenged from the start by Devvarman, the first Indian ever to reach the fourth round at Indian Wells.

Roger Federer defeated wild card Ryan Harrison 7-6 (4), 6-3, improving to 17-2 this year.

Nadal won a tight first set, then held serve to lead 5-4 in the second. He got some breathing room on Devvarman’s serve, going up 40-love and sending a forehand past the 26-year-old Indian at the net to close out the match.

Novak Djokovic extended his winning streak to 15 matches with a 6-0, 6-1 victory over Viktor Troicki.

Eighth-seeded Andy Roddick fought his temper and No. 18 Richard Gasquet of France, losing 6-3, 7-6 (5).

Roddick argued with the umpire when he trailed 3-1 in the second set, telling him he was giving him a warning of his own. He rallied to lead 6-5 before a backhand error allowed Gasquet to force the tiebreaker.

“With the mistakes he made, it’s only fair that I would give him a warning,” Roddick said. “I only made one mistake. I only broke one racket. He missed a couple of calls, so I feel like it was a little presumptuous of him to give me a warning off one broken racket.”

Roddick fell behind 5-2 in the tiebreaker, tossing his racket when Gasquet hit a winner into the corner off his drop shot. Roddick rallied to 5-5 but the Frenchman hit a backhand winner off a Roddick second serve on his first match point to close out the contest.

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