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Serbs continue historic run in Paris
June 05, 2007 18:06 IST
Jelena Jankovic and Ana Ivanovic continued an historic French Open for Serbia when they both marched into the semi-finals of the women's singles on Tuesday.
Fourth seed Jankovic, the form player on the circuit coming into Roland Garros, beat 18-year-old Czech Nicole Vaidisova 6-3, 7-5 while Ivanovic, also born in Belgrade, beat 2006 runner-up Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-0, 3-6, 6-1 in a topsy turvy encounter.
Jankovic will face the winner of the match between top seed Justine Henin or Serena Williams [Images] in her second grand slam semi-final while Ivanovic will play another Russian in her first, either Maria Sharapova [Images] or Anna Chakvetadze [Images].
It is the first time two Serbian women have reached the semi-finals at a grand slam tournament and Novak Djokovic has the chance to follow them on Wednesday in the men's event.
The 19-year-old Ivanovic, who lost in the quarters here two years ago, took the first set against a dazed Kuznetsova in just 21 minutes before the Russian belatedly came to her senses and levelled the match.
Kuznetsova asked for the trainer at 1-2 down in the decider, complaining of abdominal pain, and was clearly below-par as the tall Ivanovic marched through the next four games.
Despite winning in straight sets, Jankovic was given a much sterner examination by Vaidisova, the youngest player in the last eight and a semi-finalist here last year.
Brimming with confidence after an impressive claycourt season, Jankovic took the first set with a single break of serve and was in control after breaking midway through the second.
The match came to the boil when Vaidisova broke to level the second set at 5-5, saving a match point in the process, but she immediately lost her own serve to give Jankovic the chance to close it out again.
The tension increased as three more match points went begging at 6-5 before the battling Vaidisova netted a forehand to the relief of her opponent.
As well as the other two women's quarter-finals, two men's last eight matches are also scheduled for Tuesday.
Top seed Roger Federer [Images] takes on Spain's Tommy Robredo, while Russia's Nikolay Davydenko tackles Argentina's Guillermo Canas.
The French Open 2007 coverage