US Open champion Sam Stosur through to French Open semi-finals

 

Sam Stosur is one win away from a second French Open final after a comfortable quarter-final victory today over Dominika Cibulkova, who likened the Australian's game to that of a man.

Sixth seed Stosur, who lost to Francesca Schiavone in the showpiece two years ago, was in fine form today as she saw off her Slovak opponent 6-4 6-1.

Cibulkova is only 5ft 3in, and the kick serve and vicious topspin that are Stosur's trademarks proved too difficult for the 15th seed to counter.

She said: "I started to play much better at the end of the first set, and then I was 1-0 up and 0-40 on her serve. But I have to say that she played unbelievable today.

"Her topspin and her serve, I mean, she played like a man, and it's really hard to play against a man. It was driving me crazy on the court today. So it was really, really hard."

Stosur, who was also a semi-finalist at Roland Garros in 2009, maintained her remarkable record of never having lost a match in the main draw of a grand slam after winning the first set.

The 28-year-old said: "I guess that's a great stat to have, but when you lose the first set you want to come back, too. It just shows that I try to get off to a good start whenever possible, and when I do that, I can really impose my play on the opponent.

"It's obviously tricky for them to try and beat me if you look at that stat. So I guess it's a nice thing to have in the back of your head."

In the last four Stosur will play Italy's Sara Errani, a player she has beaten in all five of their previous meetings, including on clay in Rome last month.

"I've had success against her in the past but the semi-finals of Roland Garros is a whole new ball game," she said. "I've got to be aware of what's happening out on the court when I'm playing.

"You can think about the past and the history of the matches, but if something changes when you're out on the court, you have to be aware of that and adjust, too. I'm going to play aggressive and try and play my game.

"I know she's having a very good year and a very good tournament. I have to be ready for a tough match."

Stosur did have a reputation as a player who could not handle the pressure of the big occasion, but she answered her critics in the best possible way by beating Serena Williams to win the US Open last year.

Now chasing a second slam title, Stosur added: "I think the more you do it, the more you know what to expect and you're better equipped to handle it.

"Hopefully you've got the tools in your bag to work through it and not worry about that side of things and just go out there and play."

Errani is having a superb year and has now surpassed her achievements at the Australian Open, where she lost in the quarter-finals to Petra Kvitova.

She had never beaten a top-10 player in 28 attempts going into today's match against 10th seed Angelique Kerber, but she put that to bed with a battling display.

There were eight breaks of serve in the second set and twice Kerber served for it, but the German could not get over the line and Errani dominated the tie-break to win 6-3 7-6 (7/2).

The 25-year-old said: "At the beginning of the second set I was feeling a bit more tired, but I just tried to keep playing like I was playing.

"I had some opportunities to get to 4-2, then I lost another game at 3-3. That was really tough, I felt maybe I had to win this game.

"But I knew that the match was long. I just wanted to keep fighting for every ball, every point, and at the end the result was for me."

Errani is determined to take plenty of confidence into the semi-final despite her poor record against Stosur.

The Italian said: "She's an amazing player, of course. She's very strong. I played against her in Rome in the last tournament and it was a tough match.

"But if I'm here it's because I'm playing good, so I just want to think about that and think to fight and do my best. We will see how it goes."

The other two quarter-finals will be played tomorrow, with Maria Sharapova facing Kaia Kanepi and Wimbledon champion Kvitova playing qualifier Yaroslava Shvedova.

PA

Sport
sportWWE latest including Sting vs Triple H, Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns and The Undertaker vs Bray Wyatt
Arts and Entertainment
Louis Theroux: By Reason of Insanity takes him behind the bars again
tvBy Reason of Insanity, TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Cassetteboy's latest video is called Emperor's New Clothes rap
videoThe political parody genius duo strike again with new video
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark, TV review
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing