Rome Thursday: Sharapova Vs Ivanovic
Published May 14, 2014 12:14
Thursday, Third Round
 Maria Sharapova (RUS #7) vs.  Ana Ivanovic (SRB #13)
Head-to-head: Sharapova leads 8-2
Maria Sharapova and Ana Ivanovic have gotten quite familiar with each other, as they will be facing off for the sixth time since 2012. Sharapova has won seven straight in the head-to-head, though two of the last three have gone three sets, including most recently in the Stuttgart final a few weeks ago.
Both players are in the midst of terrific clay court seasons, with Sharapova a perfect 12-0, highlighted by titles in Stuttgart and Madrid. She also is riding a 16-match win streak in Rome, where she was champion in 2011 and 2012.
"She's always a challenging opponent, especially on clay, where some of her greatest success has come," Sharapova said of Ivanovic. "I can't take that match lightly and I look forward to a good match."
 Li Na (CHN #2) vs. Samantha Stosur (AUS #18)
Head-to-head: Stosur leads 6-0
Few players, if anyone, have had the kind of success against two-time Grand Slam champion Li Na that Samantha Stosur has. All but one of the encounters were straight set wins for the Australian, including in the semifinals here in 2011. And in the most recent one, at the 2011 WTA Championships, Stosur surrendered just one game.
That being said, Li has come a long way since then, and on Tuesday became the 12th active player with 500 professional match wins while improving to 25-4 on the season. Stosur is no stranger to success against Top 5 players, with 17 such wins under her belt.
 Agnieszka Radwanska (POL #3) vs. Francesca Schiavone (ITA #61)
Head-to-head: Radwanska leads 5-4
Agnieszka Radwanska has significantly turned around her head-to-head with former French Open champ Francesca Schiavone in recent years. She lost their first four encounters, but since then has won five consecutive - all in straight sets. The Pole's 29 wins this season trail only Carla Suárez Navarro for most on the WTA. A win would put her in the quarterfinals for the first time here since 2009.
Schiavone has 10 Top 5 wins to her credit, but none since 2011. However, she did record her first Top 20 win in almost a year in her opener here against Eugenie Bouchard.
Read more details and stats about Thursday's match-ups in our Match Notes.