Samantha Stosur into French Open semis
Australian tennis star Samantha Stosur has powered into the French Open semi-finals with a straight-sets disposal of Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova.
The US Open champion continued her authoritative march through the draw with a comprehensive 6-4 6-1 victory over the 15th seed on Tuesday.
Stosur will face Sara Errani on Thursday for a place in Saturday’s title match after the Italian downed German 10th seed Angelique Kerber 6-3 7-6 (7-2) in Tuesday’s other quarter-final.
“I’m very, very pleased with the way I played today and to get through,” Stosur said.
“She runs very fast, she’s got quick legs, likes to be aggressive and hit that forehand so you’ve got to make sure you hit the right shots at the right time.
“The last few years have been very good to me in Paris. I love playing on this court and it doesn’t get any better than this.”
The only player in the women’s draw yet to drop a set this campaign, Stosur will be a warm favourite in her third semi-final in four years at Roland Garros.
The 2010 runner-up holds a dominant winning record over Errani, conquering the 21st seed in all five previous career encounters.
Cibulkova had upset world No.1 Victoria Azarenka in the fourth round and made the semi-finals in Paris three years ago.
But Stosur simply had too many weapons for the diminutive Slovak.
Playing with controlled aggression, Stosur grabbed the first service break of the match in the fifth game as Cibulkova’s defensive moonballing tactics backfired.
Stosur wobbled trying to serve out the set at 5-2, but held her nerve to stave off three more break-back points in the 10th game to pocket the opening set with a scorching backhand winner that caught the line.
The world No.6 recovered from love-40 down in the opening game of the second set to hold and then rifled a backhand down the line to break Cibulkova again to go up 2-1.
The end was nigh for Cibulkova when Stosur nabbed a double break with two big forehands to charge to a 4-1 advantage.
The Australian broke Cibulkova again to close out the quarter-final in one hour and 25 minutes for her 18th win from 22 claycourt matches in 2012.© AAP 2013
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