Azarenka Powers Past Zvonareva In Semis
Published March 31, 2011 12:00
MIAMI, FL, USA - Two days, two Top 3 players. Victoria Azarenka's power game continued to hit its mark, as she followed her 63 63 quarterfinal win over Kim Clijsters with a 60 63 semifinal stunner over Vera Zvonareva.
Azarenka, the No.8 seed, had beaten No.2 seed and defending champ Clijsters Wednesday night and looked even sharper as she took on No.3 seed Zvonareva on Thursday night, storming through the first set in just 23 minutes - hitting nine winners to just two errors and winning three times the points (24 to 8).
Zvonareva upped the aggression in the second set, firing a forehand winner on the very first point and staying on serve through 2-all; but Azarenka broke for 3-2 and kept her head in front from then on, even breaking again in the last game.
At the end of the day, Zvonareva had more winners in the match (15 to 13) but far more errors (30 to 9).
Azarenka reached her 12th career WTA final; she is 5-6 in her first 11. This is her second time reaching the Sony Ericsson Open final, having won the title in 2009 (beating then-No.1 Serena Williams in straight sets in the final).
Zvonareva had a chance to regain the No.2 ranking here, needing to win the title to do so. The Top 3 will remain the same after this tournament now.
Japanese No.1 Kimiko Date-Krumm has set up a personal fund called Always Smile to help the Japanese earthquake and tsunami victims. If you would like to help out, please visit http://www.kimiko-date.com/gien/index.html.