View Full Version : Henin-Hardenne Beats Zvonareva To Reach Zurich Semis

Oct 17th, 2003, 07:06 PM
Henin-Hardenne Beats Zvonareva To Reach Zurich Semis

Photo By Paul Zimmer By Adrianna Outlaw

Justine Henin-Hardenne has become accustomed to hearing the backhanded compliments about her forehand. It's an effective stroke, Henin-Hardenne has been told, but lacks the aesthetic appeal of her one-handed backhand that many regard as the most beautiful shot in the sport.

The sustained brilliance of the Henin-Hardenne backhand can often overshadow her forehand the way the Statue of Liberty's torch can outshine the flame of a Bic lighter. But today, the second-ranked Belgian blistered forceful forehands from all over the court in beating Vera Zvonareva, 6-4, 6-2, to book a place in the Swisscom Challenge semifinals in Zurich, Switzerland.

A 19-year-old Moscow native, Zvonareva lacks the experience of higher-ranked compatriots Anastasia Myskina and Elena Dementieva and doesn't draw the attention younger Russian Maria Sharapova generates, yet she has quietly produced a successful season that has seen her rise to No. 12 in the WTA Tour rankings.

A feisty, fiery player who is unafraid to show her emotions on the court, Zvonareva fought off three set points in the seventh game before Henin-Hardenne finally broke to take a 4-3 lead. Serving for the set at 5-4, the Roland Garros and U.S. Open champion staved off a break point to win the first set.

Launching her five-foot-five frame into her shots with decisive aggression, Henin-Hardenne cracked a crosscourt forehand winner to break serve in the opening game of the second set. Facing a sustained assault from Henin-Hardenne's deep returns, Zvonareva went for an ambitious second serve only to double fault and drop serve in the fifth game, handing Henin-Hardenne a 4-1 lead. Three games later, another Henin-Hardenne forehand ended the match.

The second-ranked Belgian will play another Russian, Nadia Petrova, in Saturday's semifinals. Petrova beat compatriot Elena Bovina, 6-1, 6-4.Top-ranked Kim Clijsters pounded Tina Pisnik, 6-3, 6-2 to advance to the semifinals.

Oct 17th, 2003, 07:12 PM
Go Juju take Kim down this week - Nadia will be tough though I imagine

Oct 17th, 2003, 07:14 PM
Justine!!! :bounce:

Oct 17th, 2003, 07:28 PM
The russians are coming! The russians are coming!

yeah, right.

Oct 17th, 2003, 08:05 PM
Seems like Dokic and Petrova are getting their groove back this week. Kim and Justine will have to play well tomorrow for another final!