Davenport wins 16th straight match

Updated: August 20, 2004, 11:41 PM ET
Associated Press

MASON, Ohio -- Top-seeded Lindsay Davenport cruised past seventh-seeded Flavia Pennetta 6-2, 6-2 on Friday in the quarterfinals of the Western and Southern Women's Open.

It was an easier outing for Davenport, who was pushed to three sets on Thursday by Lilia Osterloh, the No. 137 player on the WTA tour.

"I was seeing the ball a lot better than last night," Davenport said. "I was controlling more points than last night and being more aggressive. I was playing the kind of tennis that's usually successful for me."

Davenport, No. 4 in the world, now has won 16 straight matches. Rain caused lengthy delays in most of the earlier matches, but Davenport had a relatively short wait before she got her match under way.

"I think we have so much experience with rain delays that I wasn't even thinking about it," Davenport said. "I was pretty lucky. I was only delayed [at the start] 35 or 40 minutes. There was very little waiting."

Davenport will play fourth-seeded Marion Bartoli, who beat unseeded Laura Granville 6-3, 6-1, in the semifinals Saturday as the tournament's top four seeds advanced Friday.

Bartoli was expected to play the semifinal despite later retiring from her doubles match with a blister on the palm of her right hand.

Second-seeded Vera Zvonareva and third-seeded Amy Frazier will meet in the other semifinal. Frazier beat Selima Sfar 6-3, 6-1 and Zvonareva defeated qualifier Shuai Peng 6-2, 6-2.

Rain delayed the start of Frazier's match with Sfar one hour and 47 minutes. The match was stopped twice for delays totaling one hour and two minutes.

"We've all dealt with it," Frazier said. "We started with no warmup, really. We were out there just trying to get our feet wet."

Sfar, at No. 129 the lowest-ranked player in the quarterfinals, took a 3-1 lead in the first set before Frazier gained momentum by winning five consecutive games.

"We were both a little sluggish, and I had never played her before," said Frazier, ranked No. 24. "I think I hit my groundstrokes really well and returned really well."

Rain also hampered the Bartoli-Granville match, which started two hours and five minutes late on an adjacent court. Granville slipped and fell with Bartoli leading 4-1 in the second set. Trainers were called to the court, though Granville was not hurt.

"I think I was more scared than anything," Granville said.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press

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