Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sharapova advances in Bank of the West

   Maria Sharapova did her part. Now it's up to Serena Williams.
   Sharapova, a Russian seeded second, outlasted Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia 6-2, 2-6, 6-4 Wednesday night in the second round of the Bank of the West Classic at Stanford.
   If Williams beats Maria Kirilenko of Russia on Thursday afternoon, she will meet Sharapova in Friday's quarterfinals in a matchup of former No. 1 players in the world.
   Williams is unseeded at No. 169 after missing 11 months because of foot injuries and life-threatening blood clots in her lungs. She returned to the circuit last month and is playing in her first tournament in the United States in almost two years.
   Also winning Wednesday were third-seeded Marion Bartoli of France, fifth-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland and eighth-seeded Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia.
   The 5-foot-3 Cibulkova, a Wimbledon quarterfinalist this year, ousted 19-year-old American Christina McHale, the youngest player in the top 100, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3.
   Bartoli won the Bank of the West Classic in 2009 and reached the final in 2008. Radwanska gained the semifinals last year and Cibulkova the quarterfinals in 2008.
   In the doubles quarterfinals Wednesday, Wimbledon runners-up Sabine Lisicki of Germany and Samantha Stosur of Australia lost to third-seeded Julia Goerges of Germany and Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic 2-6, 6-4, 10-5 match tiebreaker.

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