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August 9, 2009

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Home » Sports » Tennis

Sharapova wins, Zheng exits

MARIA Sharapova fought her way into the semifinals of the LA Championships in Carson, California, on Friday with a 6-4, 7-5 win over Polish teenager Urszula Radwanska.

Russian Sharapova will face Flavia Pennetta in the last four after the Italian stunned another Russian, second seed Vera Zvonareva, 6-4, 6-2. Romania's Sorana Cirstea upset Agnieszka Radwanska, Urszula's older sister, to set up a semifinal against Samantha Stosur, who beat Zheng Jie of China.

Three-time grand slam champion Sharapova endured some erratic ground strokes and patchy service games but used her vast experience to down the temperamental Pole.

The Russian was clearly frustrated with her lack of service consistency. "I made a lot more errors than I wanted to," said Sharapova, who double faulted 13 times. "I created so many bad habits. Eventually it's going to work itself into place."

Cirstea upset the elder Radwanska 7-6 (4), 1-6, 7-5 and will now face Australian Stosur, who reached her second consecutive semifinal with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Zheng, who ousted world No. 1 Dinara Safina in the previous round.

Cirstea received treatment for a right foot injury during the second set but hopes to be ready for Stosur.

"I think I'm learning a lot," said the 19-year-old. "I am still young. If I keep going like this, I think I can improve a lot."

Last week, Stosur upset Wimbledon champion Serena Williams at the Stanford Classic before falling to eventual winner Marion Bartoli.

In Washington, three-time champion Andy Roddick defeated bullet-serving Ivo Karlovic 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) on Friday to book a spot in the semifinals of the Legg Mason Classic.

Roddick set up an all-American affair with John Isner, who beat Czech Tomas Berdych 6-3, 6-7 (10), 6-2 at the US$1.4 million hardcourt event.

Chilean Fernando Gonzalez knocked out Tommy Haas of Germany 7-5, 6-4 and will face holder Juan Martin Del Potro, the Argentine progressing to the last four when Sweden's Robin Soderling withdrew with an elbow injury.

Roddick weathered 13 Karlovic aces on the way to his fifth win against the Croatian in a match featuring unusually long rallies for two of the hardest hitters in the game.

The 26-year-old American was playing his first tournament since losing to Roger Federer in an epic five-set final at Wimbledon last month.


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