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Davenport dumps out second seed Ivanovic

KEY BISCAYNE, Florida (AP) — Former world No. 1 Lindsay Davenport continued her astonishing comeback by upsetting second seed Ana Ivanovic 6-4 6-2 in the third round at the Sony Ericsson Open.

Davenport, who left the women’s tour in late 2006 to have her first child before returning last year, set up a fourth-round clash with Russian 13th seed Dina Safarina — who defeated Austria’s 18th seed Sybille Bammer 4-6 6-1 6-0.

The three-time Grand Slam champion is 17-3 this year with two titles, and she rated the win over Serbia’s Ivanovic as her best since returning.

Hampered by injuries in recent years, Davenport is playing at Key Biscayne for the first time since 2003. It’s quite rewarding, said Davenport, 31. In this comeback, for lack of better words, I’ve not made a fool of myself.

I’ve done pretty well for my age and for what I’ve been through. Obviously days like today just give me more intensive to keep going.

The 20-year-old Ivanovic was the Australian Open runner-up and won Indian Wells this month but her game unraveled against Davenport, who repeatedly swatted deep service returns and broke six times.

She played like a top-10 player easily today, Ivanovic said. I must say I haven’t played against many players who can return so well and so deep, so she puts a lot of pressure on my serve.

Davenport relied on her customary power but also showed surprising finesse, winning 13 of 14 points at the net. I picked the right shots to come in on, she said.

Earlier on Sunday, top seed Justine Henin and No. 6 Venus Williams also reached the fourth round.

Belgium’s Henin beat Sara Errani 6-2 6-1, and Williams defeated New Zealand wild card Marina Erakovic by the same score.

Henin, in the other half of the draw from Davenport, will next face Russia’s Elena Vesnina — a 6-4 5-7 6-4 victor against American Ashley Harkleroad.

The world No. 1 had more trouble with the 85-degree weather than with her opponent. Henin won 19 of 20 points on her first serve, including five with aces, and was glad to get off the court after only 63 minutes.

It’s very hot out there, Henin said. It was quite difficult to breathe. I usually like it when it’s hot, but I haven’t been in this heat for a long time. Even in Australia it wasn’t that hot this year, so it’s quite difficult.

Henin swept the final three games of the first set and won the final four games of the second set. She’s a seven-time Grand Slam champion, but is seeking her first title at Key Biscayne.

Williams will next play Caroline Wozniacki after the unseeded Dane upset 22nd seed Katarina Srebotnik of Slovenia 2-6 6-3 6-1.

The American is trying for her fourth Key Biscayne title, and her first since 2001. She has lost only 10 games in two matches and was pleased with her latest performance.

I played consistent and not too many errors, which is great for me, she said. I was just winning all of the important points.

Third seed Svetlana Kuznetsova also progressed, but the Russian had to retrieve a 5-2 second-set deficit a match point before winning the final 11 games to beat No. 25 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 1-6 7-5 6-0.

Fourth seed Jelena Jankovic won her second match in 18 hours, beating Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic 6-2 6-1.

The victory came after Jankovic played past midnight Saturday night, saving five match points in a third-set tiebreaker to beat Sofia Arvidsson.

The Serbian will next face China’s Zheng Jie who knocked out 24th seed Amelie Mauresmo of France, winning 5-7 6-4 6-4 against the ailing former world No. 1.
Davenport dumps out second seed Ivanovic – found here.

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March 31, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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