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Serena Dispatches Dushevina In Sydney

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Black Tennis Pro's Serena Williams vs. Very Dushevina Sydney InternationalSerena Williams, USA
Photos by Greg Wood/AFP/Getty Images)

Black Tennis Pro's Serena Williams vs. Very Dushevina Sydney InternationalSYDNEY — Serena Williams stormed into the semi-finals of the Sydney International on Wednesday, cranking up the heat on her opponents ahead of next week's Australian Open.

The American world number one tossed aside Russian Vera Dushevina 6-2, 6-2, making it just seven games she has dropped on her way to the last four of the Sydney tournament.

Williams, strong favourite to lift her fifth Australian Open crown and her 12th Grand Slam, takes on world number 27 Aravane Rezai of France in Thursday's semi-finals.

Black Tennis Pro's Serena Williams vs. Very Dushevina Sydney International
Rezai won her third match of the tournament against Italian Flavia Pennetta, 6-3, 6-0 on Wednesday.

In the bottom half of the draw, Belarus sixth seed Victoria Azarenka is through to the semi-finals after beating Slovak Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 7-5, while defending champion Elena Dementieva was due to face world number two Dinara Safina later Wednesday.

"I definitely enjoy playing in the heat," Williams said of steamy Melbourne, home to the Open. "I usually enjoy playing in the heat. I live in Florida, so it's all about hot weather there.

"So I think maybe that's one of the reasons why I do so well down here.

"The past couple of times I won it's been extremely hot, so I expect the same temperatures again."

Asked during her post-match press conference how close she was to her best form, Williams said: "I always try to get there usually around the semi-finals and finals of the Grand Slams.

"I'm just doing the best that I can now to get there. Hopefully I have a long way to go, which I think is always good."

Williams said she was expecting her toughest match of the week against Rezai.

"I haven't played her, but I know her game," she said. "I played her in doubles and (sister) Venus has played her before.

"She's a good player and she's really young. She has a lot of drive. I think she can be really good. It'll definitely be my toughest match yet."

Azarenka had to again work hard to stay alive in the tournament, taking two hours 20 minutes to extinguish the challenge of the 24th-ranked Cibulkova.

So far Azarenka has been taken to three sets in all her three matches at the tournament.

Black Tennis Pro's Serena Williams vs. Very Dushevina Sydney International

Posted by Shelia

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