<
>

Mauresmo blows two match points in upset loss

5/16/2007 - Tennis

ROME -- Top-seeded Amelie Mauresmo was upset by 29th-ranked
Samantha Stosur 7-5, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (7) Wednesday in the Italian
Open's second round.

Mauresmo wasted two match points, including one when she served for the match at 5-3 in the third set.

"The whole match was pretty tight. I just had to keep fighting
and do my best," Stosur said. "I haven't played for nearly three
hours in a long time, especially on clay."

The Italian Open is an important clay-court warmup for the
French Open, which begins May 27.

Mauresmo, a two-time Italian Open champion, hadn't dropped a set
in her five previous meetings with Stosur, but she struggled from
the start against the Australian.

Leading 5-3 in the third set, Mauresmo wasted her first match
point when she missed a forehand passing shot. Stosur broke back
and saved another match point in the tiebreaker when Mauresmo hit a
backhand into the net.


On Stosur's first match point, Mauresmo hit a risky lob that
Stosur met with a difficult backhand overhead that set up an easy
winner for Mauresmo. Stosur hit a powerful return of serve on her
next match point, and Mauresmo netted a forehand.

"I got it back to 5-5 and then pulled it out in the
tiebreaker," said Stosur, who has 21 career doubles titles but
none in singles.

Second-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova and No. 3 Jelena Jankovic also
advanced. Kuznetsova beat Mara Santangelo 6-3, 6-3, and Jankovic
eliminated 16-year-old Austrian qualifier Tamira Paszek 6-3, 6-4.

Also, sixth-seeded Dinara Safina beat Kaia Kanepi 7-6 (5), 6-2;
No. 7 Anna Chakvetadze defeated Yan Zi 6-1, 6-3; and No. 9 Daniela
Hantuchova routed Sybille Bammer 6-1, 6-2.