J&S Cup: Schiavone beats Mauresmo

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/A/Ameliemauresmo.jpg' class='caption'> Defending champion Amelie Mauresmo was eliminated by feisty Italian Francesca Schiavone.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:06 IST
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Defending champion Amelie Mauresmo was eliminated by feisty Italian Francesca Schiavone while second-seeded Venus Williams advanced to the J&S Cup semi-finals. Mauresmo slumped 3-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-1 despite dominating the early stages of the quarterfinal. She led 5-1, earned by volleying winners from the short balls offered by Schiavone, and hitting deep to keep the ninth-seeded Italian on the defensive. But Schiavone settled after the first set, and as Mauresmo failed to maintain her early momentum, Schiavone began to gain a foothold. Although Mauresmo twice broke serve to take the lead in the second set, Schiavone pulled back the break each time, and then dominated the tiebreaker. The world no 3 then faded badly in the decider. Mauresmo was broken in the opening game, and although she held off five break points at 2-0, a netted backhand at 3-1 virtually ended the contest. Schiavone swept the final two games to love. "In the first set, I was very nervous because to play with a top player is not easy," she said. "There's a lot of emotion and the way of thinking is different. But now I'm learning that every person is just a player and not magic. "For me, every point was a match point, because against a top player if you lose concentration for two minutes they play great. So it was very important for me to pay attention on every point," Schiavone added. (AP)

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