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  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

MIAMI, FL, USA – Former World No.1 Venus Williams played stellar tennis from start to finish to upset top-ranked Angelique Kerber, 7-5, 6-3, to reach the semifinals of the Miami Open.

“It was an interesting match,” she said in her press conference. “I was controlling it. I had more errors than I like and lower first serve percentage than I would like. For me, I’m looking at it from a standpoint of how can I get better.

“I have to play well against the No. 1 in the world. She’s on top of her game and she played well, so I had to find a way to play a little better.”

Williams and Kerber last played in the semifinals of Wimbledon last summer, where the German won in straight sets, and appeared on course for a similar decision at the start as she broke to open the match.

But Venus employed a hyper-aggressive gameplan throughout the one hour and 39 minute match, striking crisp groundstrokes and finishing quite a few points at the net to stay ahead of last year’s Australian Open and US Open champion.

Kerber tried to find her way back in the second set, staying within one break and saving four match points – three with searing forehand winners – but Venus ultimately proved too strong, striking 32 winners to 27 from the German.

“She was really aggressive from the beginning, and was hitting the balls really hard,” Kerber said after the match. “I think I didn’t move too well today, and made a lot of mistakes, which isn’t normal for my game. It wasn’t my best game, but she deserved to win because she played really well tonight.

“This wasn’t the best start I would have wished for,” she added of her season, “but it’s not a drama because I’m still playing good and winning matches. I’m looking forward to playing again.”

Up next for the American is British No.1 Johanna Konta, who enjoyed a comeback win over No.3 seed Simona Halep earlier on Wednesday.

“She played well, served well,” Venus said of their last meeting, which Konta won in the Bank of the West Classic final. “Tomorrow is an opportunity for me to come out and play hopefully better than today. There are a few things I would like to work on. Outside of that, just come out fresh eyes, fresh feet, and big shots.

“That’s my plan.”

Someone particularly proud of Venus tweeted her support after the match; it was none other than little sister and 23-time Grand Slam champion, Serena Williams:

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Sara Tomic Puts On A Clinic In Istanbul

Sara Tomic Puts On A Clinic In Istanbul

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

ISTANBUL, Turkey – The children of the British International School and the Robert College in Istanbul were in for a treat at the TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Cup on Tuesday, where they joined Sara Tomic for a tennis clinic.

Tomic, who was playing in the qualifying rounds, hit the Garanti Koza Arena to hit some balls with the students. She coached them through baseline drills, then teamed up for a quick doubles match. After the clinic, Tomic signed some balls and took photos with the students.

Check out the best photos below, courtesy of the TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Cup.

Sara Tomic

Sara Tomic

Sara Tomic

Sara Tomic

Sara Tomic

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Alizé Cornet's Pre-Match Sandwich

Alizé Cornet's Pre-Match Sandwich

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

Who isn’t a fan of hazelnut spread? USANA brand ambassador Alizé Cornet shared with us her favorite recipe for her favorite pre-match snacks – and you only need three ingredients to make it at home.

Watch the video above to see how Cornet makes her special banana sandwich.

Here’s everything you need:

Alize Cornet - Banana Sandwich


USANA is the Official Vitamin & Supplement Supplier of the WTA, and over 170 Athletes – including 8 out of the Top 10 and 15 out of the Top 20 use USANA products. Former No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, Samantha Stosur, Eugenie Bouchard, and Madison Keys are among several USANA ambassadors, and 2016 marks the 10th Anniversary of the USANA-WTA partnership.

 

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Vinci Victorious In Stuttgart

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

STUTTGART, Germany – 2015 US Open finalist Roberta Vinci served out a tense first round encounter with former Top 10 player Ekaterina Makarova on Wednesday, dispatching the Russian, 7-6(3), 4-6, 6-4.

Watch live action from Stuttgart & Istanbul this week on WTA Live powered by TennisTV!

Vinci and Makarova had played five times before, with the latter winning their most recent encounter at last year’s Australian Open, but it was Vinci who took the early initiative following three straight service breaks to start the match, racing out to a 5-2 lead in the first set tie-break and converting her first set point shortly thereafter.

“It was a tough match; Makarova is a great player, a difficult player with the left hand,” Vinci said after the match.

The second set featured six service breaks as Makarova recovered from losing serve to start to take a 5-3 lead in the hopes of leveling the match, ultimately breaking the No.6 seed to even out the contest.

“The court is fast, and I was a set and 3-1 with a lot of chances to go 4-2, but I lost the second set. The beginning of the third, I stayed focused, didn’t think about the second set, played aggressively because the court is fast, and it’s not easy to defend.”

Undaunted, Vinci promptly took an early lead in the decider and never looked back, clinching the win on her ifrst match point. In all, the match was quite high-quality affair, with each woman hitting over 40 winners and just around 30 unforced errors; the Italian veteran provided the cleaner hitting of the two with 44 winners to 31 unforced while Makarova struck 40 winners and 33 errors of her own.

Vinci also struck six aces to her unseeded opponent, who couldn’t find any aces in her arsenal on Wednesday, striking three double faults instead.

“I’m happy because I played two bad matches in Fed Cup, so now here it’s nice to come and win this match.”

Vinci next plays 2011 champion Julia Goerges; the ASB Classic finalist outfoxed Alizé Cornet, 6-4, 6-0, to reach the second round in one hour and 16 minutes.

Karolina Pliskova won a more topsy-turvy firts round on Court 1; playing last year’s French Open finalist Lucie Safarovs, Pliskova edged past her countrywoman, 7-6(4), 4-6, 7-5, in well over two and a half hours.

The big-serving Czech dynamo snuck off with an opening set of 12 straight service holds, and held off a late surge from Safarova, who won her first set of 2016 and recovered from a 5-3 deficit in the final set.

In the last match of the day session, Andrea Petkovic outsteadied Kristina Mladenovic to win a fourth straight encounter agains the French youngster, 6-2, 6-4. Completing the round of 16 line-up, Petkovic will next take on top seed Agnieszka Radwanska.

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