Venus Williams moves into third round at BNP Paribas Open

14 March, 2018, 06:23 | Author: Gladys Mathis
  • Serena wins

She will now renew her rivalry with big sister Venus, who advanced to the third round after defeating Romania's Sorona Cirstea 6-3, 6-4, earlier in the day.

"I'm getting there. I have such a long way to go", Serena said. "So it is what it is".

Serena was already pregnant with daughter Alexis Olympia, who was born on 1 September, when she beat Venus 6-4 6-4 in Melbourne.

"It takes me a few games, a few matches before hopefully you get it where you want it to be", said the number eight seed after her first match in a month.

Serena had to serve for the match twice against a determined Bertens but closed it out 7-6 (5), 7-5.

She featured in an exhibition match in Dubai and lost to Ostapenko and also played doubles with sister Venus in the Fed Cup. She went up a break for 2-1 in the second set only to be broken right back.

Serena, 36 and vying to become the first woman to win three Indian Wells titles, clinched the victory against Bertens on her second match point when Bertens blasted a forehand wide. "I definitely don't have a favorite match".

"She's playing really well and just honing her game".

The second seed and Australian Open champion will next face Aliaksandra Sasnovich of Belarus.

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Venus said it looked like her sister had never been away. "It's a huge difference to play her in the semi-finals or even the quarter-finals or a final as opposed to the third round".

At 37, Venus is the oldest in women's single draw at 2018 Indian Wells. Fans who felt cheated of a chance to see the siblings play, thinking it was a tactic orchestrated by their father Richard, booed Serena during her final triumph against Kim Clijsters.

Serena boycotted the event until 2015.

The first set could have gone either way as Bertens troubled Williams, though the Dutchman's serve proved to be her downfall.

Venus is enjoying a resurgence on the Tour after a string of injuries limited her playing time for several seasons.

That was not always the case on Saturday against the Dutch 29th seed as Serena missed some serves by considerable margins and mistimed a few groundstrokes that landed far off the mark.

Muguruza took a 3-0 lead in the second set and appeared headed to the third round at Indian Wells, but the 22-year-old fought back.

In other matches Saturday, defending champion Elena Vesnina eliminated American CiCi Bellis 2-6, 6-1, 6-1; No. 4 seed Elina Svitolina beat Mona Barthel 6-4, 6-3; No. 12 Julia Goerges defeated Natalia Vikhlyantseva 6-4, 6-1; No. 27 Carla Suarez Navarro beat Su-Wei Hsieh 6-4, 2-6, 6-3; and No. 26 Daria Gavrilova dismissed Yanina Wickmayer 7-6 (3), 6-2.

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