Top Two Seeds Through to Final Four in Florida
Published April 10, 2009 12:00
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FL, USA - Top-seeded Nadia Petrova and fifth-seeded Aleksandra Wozniak will battle each other in one of Saturday's semifinals at The MPS Group Championships after both prevailed in third set tie-breaks Friday, while second-seeded Caroline Wozniacki had a much easier time.
Petrova, who recorded her 400th career singles match win Wednesday, edged seventh-seeded Alona Bondarenko, 46 63 76(5), despite having to be treated for a blister on her right toe during the match and being down 3-0 in the third set. The Russian won this event in 2006 when it was held at Amelia Island, one of her nine Sony Ericsson WTA Tour singles titles, the most of anyone left in the field. Bondarenko had defeated her sister and doubles partner, Kateryna, in the second round and matched her best-ever result at this event, having also made the quarters last year. As for Wozniak, she saved a match point down 6-5 in the third set and survived Tamira Paszek, 63 36 76(7). The Canadian has been extended to three sets in all three of her matches this week.
On the bottom half of the draw, Elena Vesnina, who knocked off sixth-seeded Peng Shuai in the first round, upended another seed, third-seeded Dominika Cibulkova, 75 67(5) 63, despite getting in a 3-0 hole in the third set. Vesnina, who also has been extended to three sets in all three of her matches this week, is now 2-1 in the series between the two, including a victory in Dubai this year.
Vesnina will take on Wozniacki in Saturday's other semifinal, as the Dane routed wildcard Daniela Hantuchova, 62 62. Wozniacki is aiming for her fourth career Tour singles title, but will have her hands full with Vesnina, who won their most recent meeting, in Aukland in January.
In the doubles semis, Chuang Chia-Jung and Sania Mirza will play Liga Dekmeijere and Angela Haynes, and top-seeded Kveta Peschke and Lisa Raymond will take on Wozniacki and Barbora Zahlavova Strycova.