Section: Tennis

Tennis: Serena through in Cincinnati

World number one Serena Williams stormed into the semi-finals with a 58-minute thrashing of Jelena Jankovic

Williams, bidding for her first title at the Cincinnati, Ohio hardcourt tournament, romped to a 6-1 6-3 victory over her Serbian opponent.

Williams needed just 25 minutes to claim the first set against Jankovic. She fell behind 2-1 in the second with an early break, but won five of the next six games, closing out the match with back-to-back aces.

“She’s beaten me several times, so I knew today I just had to be focused and do the best I could,” Williams told reporters after claiming her 10th win in 14 matches against Jankovic.

“It didn’t seem fast,” Williams said. “I was just trying my best. And she played some great points. I was just trying to not make many errors, stay focused and do the best that I could.”

The top seed wound up with as many winners as unforced errors at 22-22 while the eighth-eeded Jankovic finished made five winners and 24 unforced errors.

Williams is bidding for a first title in six attempts at Cincinnati. The five previous failures are her second-most attempts at a WTA tournament without winning it. She has played the Sydney event six times without lifting the trophy.

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Tennis: Andy Murray into Cincinnati last 16 as James Ward goes out

Britain’s Andy Murray progressed to the last 16 of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati with a 6-3 6-3 win over Portugal’s Joao Sousa.

The number eight seed broke Sousa, 25, in his opening service game and wrapped up victory in an hour and 11 minutes.

Murray, 27, faces American John Isner – last year’s runner-up – in the next round.

British number two James Ward, 27, lost 6-2 6-2 to France’s Julien Benneteau in the second round.

“I got the win and that’s the most important thing,” said Murray, who was beaten by Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the Rogers Cup quarter-finals in Toronto last week.

“It’s very different conditions here this week and a lot of the guys are struggling to control the ball, so I was happy to come through. It’s a good start.”

Qualifier Ward, who upset Spain’s Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in the first round, was broken twice in each set by world number 41 Benneteau.

Benneteau faces a last-16 tie with Poland’s Jerzy Janowicz, a 6-4 3-6 6-3 winner over Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov.

Eleventh seed Isner, 29, beat Australian qualifier Marinko Matosevic 6-3 7-6.

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Tennis: Rogers Cup: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beats Roger Federer to win title

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat Roger Federer in straight sets to win the Rogers Cup for the first time.

The Frenchman, who recorded impressive wins over Andy Murray andGrigor Dimitrov in the previous rounds, won 7-5 7-6 (7-3) in Toronto.

The first set went with serve until former world number one Federer went long on Tsonga’s first break point.

Federer saved a championship point before Tsonga, 29, claimed his second ATP Masters 1000 title.

The Frenchman’s powerful display against the 17-time Grand Slam winner capped a fine few days in Canada that also saw him down Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic, as well as Murray and Dimitrov.

Federer said Tsonga “deserved this title”, adding “he beat some amazing players on the way”.

Tsonga said: “If you believe in something it can happen. I’m proud of what I’ve achieved this week.”

Despite Tsonga winning 93% of points on his first serve, Federer clung on on the first set, and was 30-0 up on Tsonga’s service at 5-5.

But the world number 15 fought back, and after a Federer challenge was overruled at 30-30 in the next game, Tsonga took the set at the first opportunity when the 33-year-old Swiss sent a forehand a long way out.

Federer saved five break points in the second set, but when Tsonga had championship point at 5-4 a shout from the crowd appeared to upset his concentration and allow Federer a life.

However, after he edged ahead in the tie-break Tsonga set himself up for victory with a powerful forehand, before Federer found the net on the next point to give his French opponent his first ATP 1000 title since the Paris Masters in 2008.

Tennis: Agnieszka Radwanska beats Venus Williams in Toronto

Agnieszka Radwanska swept aside Venus Williams to win the women’s singles title at the Rogers Cup in Montreal.

The Pole won 6-4 6-2 in 82 minutes to clinch her 14th WTA title.

“I really had an amazing week,” said Radwanska, 25, who defeated Victoria Azarenka and Ekaterina Makarova on her run to the final.

The win gives Radwanska her first tournament victory of 2014 and will be a boost for the world number five ahead of the US Open later this month.

Radwanska took control of the match early on against an erratic Williams, racing into a 4-1 lead and holding her nerve to close out the first set.

And Williams, who defeated her sister Serena in a three-set semi-final on Saturday, was no match for the energetic Pole in a one-sided second set.

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Despite the defeat, Williams, who is expected to return to the top 20 in the world rankings, refused to be downbeat about her performance.

Tennis: Tsonga shocks Djokovic in Toronto

Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga handed world number one Novak Djokovic a shock 6-2 6-2 third round defeat on Thursday as the Rogers Cup in was rocked by upsets.

A three-time winner on the Canadian hard courts, Djokovic never found his rhythm in Torontom needing a third set tiebreak to get past Frenchman Gael Monfils on Wednesday in his opening match.

Playing his first event as a married man, the Serb had reached the semi-finals or better in all seven tournaments he had played since a quarter-final loss at the Australian Open, winning titles at Indian Wells, Miami, Rome and Wimbledon where he reclaimed the top ranking.

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Tennis: Andy Murray faces Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in quarter-final

Andy Murray will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the quarter-final of the Rogers Cup after his third-round opponent Richard Gasquet pulled out with an abdominal injury.

Frenchman Tsonga earned a shock 6-2 6-2 win over top seed and world number one Novak Djokovic.

The Wimbledon champion looked rusty as he slipped to defeat in 64 minutes.

Swiss world number four Stan Wawrinka was also knocked out, losing 7-6 (10-8) 7-5 to South African Kevin Anderson.

The highest-ranked player now left in the top half of the draw is Murray’s Wimbledon nemesis Grigor Dimitrov, a potential semi-final opponent for the Brit.

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Tennis: Andy Murray beats Nick Kyrgios at Rogers Cup in Toronto

British No 1 cruises past young Australian 6-2, 6-2 to advance to the third round.

It took Andy Murray just 54 minutes on Wednesday to appear to unshackle himself of any lingering disappointment of his quarter-final defeat at Wimbledon last month.

It was Australia’s rising star Nick Kyrgios who was forced to endure the full frontal assault of Murray’s powerful revival as he crashed to a 6-2, 6-2 defeat in the second round of the Rogers Cup in Toronto’s Rexall Centre.

Kyrgios had made a name for himself at Wimbledon by defeating Rafael Nadal on the way to the quarter-finals, but the 19-year-old was painfully anonymous in the face of the most physically domineering game Murray had produced since his back surgery last December.

The memories of Murray’s meltdown during his Wimbledon exit to Grigor Dimitrov were eradicated as he battered the Australian with a powerful service game and booming return game on his first return to action since dropping to ninth in the world rankings.

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Tennis : Rafael Nadal faces three weeks on sidelines with wrist injury

Rafael Nadal has suffered a wrist injury less than a month before the start of the US Open in New York.

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The Spaniard, the reigning champion at Flushing Meadows, will be out of action for two to three weeks after hurting his right wrist in training on Tuesday.

Nadal, 28, has pulled out of defending his titles in Toronto and Cincinnati as he targets a return to fitness in time for the US Open, starting on 25 August.

“I’m extremely disappointed that I am unable to defend my titles,” he said.

Nadal has not competed since his shock defeat by Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios in the fourth round at Wimbledon on 1 July.

The defence of his crowns in Toronto and Cincinnati were key hard-court season warm-ups ahead of the US Open, where Nadal will go in search of a 15th career Grand Slam crown.

“Unfortunately I injured my right wrist on Tuesday during practice,” the world number two confirmed.

“After the tests I have undergone in Spain, including an MRI and checking with my doctors, I will have to stay out of competition for at least two to three weeks.”

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Tennis : Novak Djokovic: Wimbledon win most special of my career

Novak Djokovic described his dramatic Wimbledon win over Roger Federer as the “most special” of his career after it ended his losing run in finals.

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The Serb, 27, won 6-7 (7-9) 6-4 7-6 (7-4) 5-7 6-4 after missing a championship point and letting a 5-2 lead slip in the fourth set.

By winning the fifth set, Djokovic ended a run of three straight defeats – and five out of six – in major finals.

“It’s the most special Grand Slam final I’ve played,” he said.

“At this time of my career for this Grand Slam trophy to arrive is crucial, especially after losing several Grand Slam finals in a row.

“I started doubting a little bit. I needed this win a lot. I’m going to try to use it in the best possible way and for my confidence to grow for the rest of my season and the rest of my career.”

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