Clijsters Advances To Western & Southern Championship - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Clijsters Advances To Western & Southern Championship

MASON, Ohio (AP) - Kim Clijsters reached the final of the

Cincinnati Open on Saturday when Serbia's Ana Ivanovic hurt her

left foot only 12 minutes into their match and left the court in

tears.

The fourth-seeded Belgian will be well-rested when she plays her

third title match of the year. Ivanovic's injury allowed the

27-year-old Clijsters to get a break from the oppressive afternoon

heat - an on-court thermometer reached 120 degrees during the week.

Russians Maria Sharapova and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova were set

to play in the other semifinal on Saturday night.

The first semifinal ended after only 25 points.

Clijsters broke Ivanovic's serve to go up 2-1. In the next game,

Ivanovic appeared to twist her left foot while setting up to make a

forehand return from the baseline. She hit one more point during

the rally - another forehand - then dropped her racket and bent

over in pain.

She walked gingerly to her chair and took a medical timeout,

removing her shoe. A trainer rubbed the inside of the foot, from

below the ankle to the arch. Ivanovic got the foot taped and tried

to continue. After the second point - a serve that Ivanovic didn't

even bother to chase - the match was over.

Ivanovic cried as she hobbled off the court, another setback in

a disappointing season for the former No. 1-ranked player. She was

limited by an injured right shoulder early in the season and had

trouble getting back in form. She hasn't reached the final at any

tournament this year, and came to Cincinnati ranked No. 62.

She had a good week, reaching only her third semifinal of the

year. The foot injury left the rest of her disappointing season in

doubt.

Clijsters has turned Cincinnati into her comeback city each of

the last two years.

Last year, the Belgian returned to tennis in Cincinnati after

taking more than two years off to start a family and recharge. She

got her game together quickly, reached the quarterfinals and built

upon the momentum, winning the U.S. Open title a few weeks later.

This year, she was sidelined for nearly two months after tearing

muscles in her left foot, forcing her to miss the French Open. She

took a break from tournament play after Wimbledon, then showed up

in Cincinnati looking to get her game together again.

Her path to the final opened up when Serena and Venus Williams

both withdrew because of injuries before the tournament started,

and five of the top eight seeds were knocked out on Thursday.

 

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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