Venus to face Aussie Open semifinalist Zuluaga in Warsaw
April 26, 2004
SportsLine.com wire reports
WARSAW, Poland -- Venus Williams
is back at the J&S Cup, where she picked up an injury that hampered her much of 2003.
It was in Warsaw last year that Williams strained a stomach muscle and had to quit in the final against Amelie Mauresmo
. Unwilling to miss the French Open or Wimbledon, Williams played through the pain.
But after losing to sister Serena in the Wimbledon final in July, she was sidelined for the rest of the season.
"The toughest part was accepting that I had to stay out. I'm not the kind of person who accepts a circumstance," Williams said Monday. "I like to make something happen for myself, and this was a case where I could not do more, no matter what I tried."
She received a first-round bye at the clay-court tuneup for Roland Garros. In the second round, Williams will face Australian Open semifinalist Fabiola Zuluaga
, who beat Anabel Medina Garrigues
7-6 (12-10), 6-4 in Monday's only match.
Zuluaga fought off three set points in the tiebreaker.
"You don't expect any easy matches, but this was a tough one," Zuluaga said. "She was returning really good and stepping into the court, so I tried to put more first serves in and that worked. I knew I would have to fight a lot and suffer a little, too."
Now she is looking forward to facing Williams, who has won seven straight matches, including her first title in 14 months.
"I have nothing to lose," Zuluaga said. "I'll be relaxed and just go out there and try to do my best."
The Associated Press News Service