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HENIN AND SHARAPOVA WIN THROUGH

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Justine Henin overcame her toughest test yet to reach the semi-finals of the French Open as she bids to win the event for the third successive year.

The defending champion beat Serena Williams 6-4 6-3 to move into the last four, where she is joined by second seed Maria Sharapova.

Sharapova saw off the challenge of fellow Russian Anna Chakvetadze 6-3 6-4 to set up a semi-final clash with Ana Ivanovic, while Henin will face the other Serb left in the draw, Jelena Jankovic.

There was precious little to choose between Henin and Australian Open champion Williams in the first set, but it was the Belgian who claimed the decisive break.

Henin then grew stronger in the second set, breaking at 2-2 and then again to book her passage to the semi-finals.

The first set had been just the sort of tight encounter that had been expected, Henin winning just one point more than her opponent and with both players hitting the same number of winners and unforced errors.

The second set, however, was a different story. After trading breaks at the beginning of the set, Henin secured a further break to edge 3-2 ahead and consolidated with an efficient service game for a 4-2 lead.

Williams held in her next service game to keep the pressure on the top seed but was unable to follow it up with a break of serve.

Henin raced to 40-15 against the Williams serve in the ninth game and closed out the match at the first opportunity.

Playing in her fifth French Open, Sharapova reached the last four for the first time with a comfortable win over ninth seed Chakvetadze.

Sharapova had to save three match points to get past Switzerland's Patty Schnyder, but she earned decisive breaks at key times to subdue Chakvetadze.

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posted Jun 6, 2007

I think you'll find Seles has 9 to her name (and probably would've reached late-teens in GS wins if she wasn't tragically robbed of 3 years in the midst of a glittering career).

Henin has 5 - gunning for 6th mikesiva.

Go Jankovic/Ivanovic. Games needs someone who is 'genuinely' nice to come through. Lets have a smiley-final !?. ;o>

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comment by stanBxl (U4826653)

posted Jun 6, 2007

"No woman in the open era has as many grand slam trophies as Serena in their cabinet."
--------------------------------------------

18 Grand Slam singles titles for Navratilova.
22 Grand Slam singles titles for Graf.

cloudxx, Serena has won only 8. what on earth are you talking about?

------------------------
Not to mention Chris Evert....

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comment by Enrique (U3485961)

posted Jun 6, 2007

"I am really surprised more opponents don't complain about Sharapova's grunting".
A bit difficult: most of them do.
If she plays as she did against Serena, Justine will win the trophy. I think the other finalist will be Masha, although she has been a bit low as of late, but she is increasingly getting into it.
Both semis and the final of course will be very beautiful to watch. Not to be missed!
loveblush

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posted Jun 6, 2007

ONLY 8, i think you will find 8 is quite alot of slams in this current era. Obviously 22 is more impressive but 8 is quite alot. Well done to Henin for beating Serena in straight sets. Henin played well, Serena didn't play her game at all. Deep down i knew Serena wouldn't win, i was just hoping she would. I want Jankovic to win RG now, shes played very well during the clay court season.

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posted Jun 6, 2007

I believe Serena wasnt making excuses about her loss to Henin, the fact is that Serena did not play well during the match. Yes, Henin is of course an amazing player, however when Serena is playing at her best, there is absolutely no one who can beat, including Henin. Serena was far from her best in this latest match.

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comment by stanBxl (U4826653)

posted Jun 6, 2007

dear twinbeyond, you should ask yourself: 'why' ?

Once you get the answer, you will undersatnd why Serena lost.

As in many other sports, you play badly because your opponent makes you so.
Once again we saw it yesterday. Not easy to see, but if you take time and analyses, it becomes obvious.

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posted Jun 7, 2007

Methinks it's going to be a Sharapova v Henin final, and in a shock repeat of Maria's maiden GS at Wimbledon over Serena, she might just pull off a win, denying Justine a hat-trick of back-to-back titles.

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posted Jun 7, 2007

henin and sharpova in the final .henin will take rg

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posted Jun 7, 2007

I was surprised that sharapova made it to the semis. she was lucky to have a comfortable draw. i dont think at all sharapova is a favourite against ivanovic. ana is in very good form. she is very powerful and if she plays her best tennis she will make to the finals.
jankovic vs. henin. it will be another close 3 sets match but henin will prevail again. it seems that jankovic lacks the mental edge against henin. she was 4-0 up in the 3rd set against henin in their last match but she eventually lost. her form and titles boosted her confidence. still, I think henin will be the champ of rg

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posted Jun 7, 2007

i think both games could be close or the two serbs getting blown away by nerves. I hope the games are tight as the only great game so far was sharapova v shnyder. I also think maria has done really well to get this far considering her shoulder. Am looking forward to 2 interesting matches.

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