US Open Day 10 Preview
Published September 04, 2012 11:59
NEW YORK, NY, USA - The identity of the final three semifinalists at the US Open will be confirmed on Wednesday as Sara Errani locks horns with doubles partner Roberta Vinci, Serena Williams takes on Ana Ivanovic and Maria Sharapova and Marion Bartoli complete their rain-interrupted match.
Arthur Ashe Stadium
 Ana Ivanovic (SRB #13) vs.  Serena Williams (USA #4)
Head-to-head: Williams leads 3-0
When Ana Ivanovic steps onto Arthur Ashe to face Serena Williams on Wednesday evening she will be appearing in her first major quarterfinal since winning Roland Garros back in 2008. However, if she wants to extend her stay any further in the Big Apple, she will need to produce one of the performances of her career.
In Williams, she is taking on a player at the very top of her game. Since losing in the first round of Roland Garros, the American produced some of the best tennis of her career over the summer months as she swept her way to the Wimbledon, Olympic and Stanford titles. This fine form has been carried over to Flushing Meadows, where Williams has looked hungry for a fourth US Open title and first since 2008, dropping just 12 games thus far.
While not quite as serene, Ivanovic's progress has been impressive none the less; she came from a set down to defeat the dangerous Sloane Stephens in the third round before booking a last eight spot with a dominant win over Tsvetana Pironkova. Williams has won all three of the players' past encounters in straight sets - the most recent coming at the US Open 12 months ago - and Ivanovic will need to serve well and stay aggressive, particularly on the forehand, if she is to stand a chance of causing the upset.
 Sara Errani (ITA #10) vs.  Roberta Vinci (ITA #19)
Head-to-head: Errani leads 3-2
Doubles partners, best friends and now opponents. There will be no secrets when Sara Errani faces Roberta Vinci on Louis Armstrong for the right to become Italy's first US Open semifinalist in the Open Era.
For Vinci, Wednesday's match will see her enter unchartered territory, having never been beyond the fourth round of a Slam prior to this fortnight. Yet she looked anything but overawed by the occasion against World No.2 Agnieszka Radwanska in the fourth round, delivering a near-faultless performance to notch up her 13th hardcourt win of the summer.
Errani, on the other hand, is appearing in her third major quarterfinal, after reaching the same stage at the Australian Open and Roland Garros earlier this year. This experience, and her victories in the players' past three meetings, arguably makes her the slight favorite, although Vinci's more aggressive game and current form leaves the outcome intriguingly up in the air.
Also on court...
After the weather intervened on Tuesday evening, No.3 seed Maria Sharapova and Marion Bartoli resume their quarterfinal midway through the first set, while in the doubles the in-form Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka and the Williams sisters' conquerors, Maria Kirilenko and Nadia Petrova, are looking to secure semifinal spots.