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Friday, Oct. 1, 2010

Wozniacki waltzes into semifinals

World's No. 2 awaits match with Azarenka


Staff writer

Caroline Wozniacki is really pleased with herself at the moment and it's showing on the court. She just didn't have to show it for very long in her latest match.

News photo
Thrill of victory: Italy's Francesca Schiavone celebrates her three-set triumph over Kaia Kanepi of Estonia in the Pan Pacific Open quarterfinals on Thursday. AP PHOTO

Wozniacki needed only 29 minutes to advance to the semifinals of the Pan Pacific Open after Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska retired with a foot injury during their quarterfinal tilt on Thursday.

Wearing a big smile and a Liverpool tracksuit, Wozniacki wasn't expecting to have any problems in her next match after such a brief time on the court.

"Well I always get the question," the world's No. 2 player beamed. "If I play a fast match, they ask me if it's enough. If I play a long match, they ask me if I'm too tired. I'm happy about my performance today. I feel like I played some great tennis."

The Dane led 5-0 in the first set at Ariake Tennis Forest Park when Radwanska injured her left foot and couldn't continue.

"I'm definitely very disappointed to have to withdraw," Radwanska said in a statement. "Unfortunately the foot is not great and I was in a lot of pain. I knew it was going to be a tough match, but I wanted to try to fight.

"Caroline and I are very good friends, and she's playing so well. She's too good to play when you're carrying an injury."

Wozniacki will play Victoria Azarenka of Belarus in the semifinals. Azarenka defeated Coco Vandeweghe 6-2, 6-1 in their quarterfinal match.

"Victoria is another great player and one of my good friends as well," Wozniacki said. "She is a player who is hitting the ball strongly, she's been playing well and I think this surface really suits her game. It's going to be a tough match. I haven't really thought too much about the match yet, but tomorrow I'm sure I'll be ready."

French Open champion Francesca Schiavone also advanced to the final four after holding off a spirited challenge from Estonia's Kaia Kanepi to win 7-5, 4-6, 7-5.

The match was a battle all the way through for the Italian, who is ranked No. 6 in the world.

"I really tried to take the points," Schiavone said. "If I wanted to win, I had to push to go to the net and be aggressive. Because she played so well, to make the difference I had to work a little bit more than her."

She added a bit of levity to the match with a between-the-legs shot that ended with her tossing her racket into the crowd.

"Tennis is not just work, work, work," Schiavone said. "I saw something different, something fun. I want to enjoy it when I have the possibility or chance."

Schiavone will face Elena Dementieva in the semifinals. Dementieva defeated Vera Zvonareva 7-5, 6-2 in an all-Russian quarterfinal.



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