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Rediff.com  » Sports » Hantuchova finally beats Venus

Hantuchova finally beats Venus

June 16, 2011 21:46 IST

Daniela Hantuchova beat Venus Williams for the first time in 11 career meetings to advance to the semi-finals of the Eastbourne International grass court tournament on Thursday.

The Slovak overcame difficult, windy conditions to triumph 6-2, 5-7, 6-2 and cut short Williams' comeback before she begins her bid for a sixth Wimbledon singles title next week.

Playing her first tournament following a five-month layoff with an abdominal injury, the American had looked impressive in beating Ana Ivanovic in straight sets on Wednesday.

Having beaten Hantuchova in all 10 of their previous meetings dating back to 2001, she must have been confident of another success in the battle between two unseeded quarter-finalists but was outclassed in the first set.

The American fought back from a break down to take the second as the wind contributed to some wild hitting but Hantuchova, who reached the final of last week's Birmingham grass court event, soon took command again to dominate the decisive set.

"I was hitting the ball well before it got really windy and then it got difficult for both of us and then it was a question of who had the mentality to win," Hantuchova told British Eurosport."

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