Justine & Maria: Showdown In Paris
Published May 28, 2010 12:00
PARIS, France - World No.1 Serena Williams didn't waste any time playing catch-up on Friday, cruising through her rain-postponed second round match against Julia Goerges comprehensively at the French Open, 61 61.
Playing the big-hitting Goerges for the very first time Williams showed she could hit it bigger, taking control of the rallies - and putting together the cleaner numbers at the same time - en route to the 55-minute win. Williams was +9 winners-to-errors (13-4) while Goerges had a -8 differential (12-20).
Afterwards, Williams was asked if she can learn anything from such a quick match: "I can learn a lot. Like what was I doing today? How can I get all my matches to be like that? Those are the questions I can ask myself."
Williams will next play No.29 seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who beat Jill Craybas shortly afterwards, 64 61. The pair has never played before but Pavlyuchenkova has had success against a Williams before - she beat Venus in Tokyo and Beijing last fall, one of only two players ever to beat her twice in two weeks (Lindsay Davenport also achieved the feat in the summer of 2004).
Maria Sharapova, Justine Henin and Marion Bartoli had begun their second round matches Thursday but darkness cut them short; they all completed them on a sunny Friday, with No.13 seed Bartoli the first of the trio to wrap things up, going from 4-5 in the first set to beat countrywoman Olivia Sanchez, 75 62.
Henin, the No.22 seed, closed out Klara Zakopalova on her fourth match point, 63 63 (the match had been stopped at 63 32), while Sharapova, the No.12 seed, finished her match with Kirsten Flipkens, 63 63 (stopped at 63 22).
Henin and Sharapova will now meet in a blockbuster third round match-up on Saturday. Henin leads the head-to-head series with Sharapova, 6-3.
"It's going to be very exciting to play her again in my second career," Henin said. "She's a real fighter. Everyone knows what she has done. She remains someone very, very strong. She has the fighting spirit. It's going to be a question of attitude and trying to be aggressive. I want to win the match tomorrow."
"We've had some great matches in the past. I've had some tough losses and great wins," Sharapova said. "She has the ability to come out against all different types of players, no matter how big they hit or how strong they are, take the pace really well, play her own game and make you hit lots of balls.
"It feels like it was just yesterday we last played... I look forward to this one."
In other second rounds, No.7 seed Samantha Stosur beat Rossana de los Ríos, 46 61 60; No.16 seed Yanina Wickmayer beat Sybille Bammer, 76(4) 16 75; No.23 seed Daniela Hantuchova beat Olga Govortsova, 75 63; and qualifier Anastasia Pivovarova reached the third round in only her second Grand Slam main draw with a 64 63 upset of No.25 seed Zheng Jie.