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Williams takes fight to Mauresmo
By William Johnson in Rome
Last Updated: 1:28am BST 15/05/2007

Serena Williams marched into Rome's Foro Italico yesterday in gladiatorial fashion, throwing down the gauntlet to the Italian Open's top seed, Amelie Mauresmo, whom she is due to meet in an intriguing quarter-final on Friday.

Williams, winner of this year's Australian Open and Miami championships, possesses a modest world ranking of 11 because of her reduced activity on the women's tour but still considers herself the dominant force and has her sights fixed on a second Roman crown to add to the one she won in 2002.

Asked whether it would be better for her to meet Mauresmo later in the tournament, Williams was bullish in her response. "For me or for her?" she inquired before taking another swipe at the Wimbledon champion by omitting her from her list of serious contenders for Roland Garros this month.

advertisementWilliams, still only 25, reckons she is approaching her physical peak again after a groin injury as she aims to repeat her Rome-Paris double of five years ago - a year in which she went on to add Wimbledon and US Open honours to her collection.

"I never felt like I reached my full potential on the clay courts," she said. "I feel I can do a lot better on the clay than I have in the past. For the next several years I think I can do a lot better."

Those are frightening words for the leading crop of current players who believed the Williams sisters' best days were behind them. They did not seem to bother Mauresmo, though. She put a defensive spin on her return volley when she confessed that she was not yet ready to go hunting for the No 1 ranking so soon after returning to action following appendix surgery.

Mauresmo begins her quest for a third Rome triumph tomorrow against either Francesca Schiavone or Samantha Sosur.

Williams, who is also exempt until the second round, plays 'lucky loser' Michaella Krajicek, who easily beat Olga Poutchkova 6-1, 6-2 in one of yesterday's first-round matches.

Daniela Hantuchova, a first-round casualty in Berlin recently, looked like suffering more despair on the road to Paris as she lost the opening set to French qualifier Aravane Rezai but the 11th seed refused to panic and eventually prevailed, 4-6, 6-1, 6-2.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml?xml=/sport/2007/05/15/stwome15.xml

and:


The Times
May 15, 2007

Williams throws down gauntlet for Paris

Serena Williams was asked yesterday to reveal her top five picks to win the French Open. “Well, Rafael Nadal, Roger . . .” she replied before she was interrupted. The inquisitor wanted to know which women she thought might win. “Oh, Serena, Justine Henin and Venus.” And that was that.

Never knowingly understated, Serena has returned to the forefront of the game at this week’s BNL d’Italia international in Rome, with a Victoria Beckham-like hairstyle - “it’s my rebellious look” - a svelter figure and the same old certainty in her abilities.

Her contribution to women’s tennis in 2007 - she has played four tournaments, won two titles, the Australian Open and Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, before retiring against Chan Jan-Yung from Taipei, China, in Charleston - is a sparse return on what would be the conventional sense of commitment. But Serena is not going to change. Being a part-timer keeps her hungry.

Williams is one place from the top ten where two Serbians now reside after Ana Ivanovic won the German Open on Sunday to move to No 8, a career high. In her mind, though, which is all that has ever mattered to her, she is the best in the world.

“If I was against me like everyone else has been, I would never have succeeded the way I have,” she said. “Even if you are the only positive one, it’s a big difference.” The 2002 French Open champion returns to Paris after a two-year absence, saying that she is a “completely different person” who is “ready to fulfil all my potential”.

That could spell real trouble for the field, for when Serena is in the mood, it will take something very special to stop her.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/tennis/article1790196.ece
 

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:lol: That author is extremely creative...
 

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I bet this journalist got an A in creative writing.:tape:
 

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LUVZ IT!! :worship:
Serena must be from my neighborhood. :lol:
 

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Serena throws down the gauntlet.....LOL!!!!! Haters, get on your job.


*Pureracket purchases wolf tickets*
 

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:drool::hearts:

Can't wait to see her KICK some ASS :drool:
 

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She didn't "call" Mauresmo out. The article is just stirring up drama, or trying to, between Serena and Amelie fans. :)
 

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haha that is like the best article ever..
 

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She didn't "call" Mauresmo out. The article is just stirring up drama, or trying to, between Serena and Amelie fans. :)
If this article is to be believed she did call out momo in a subtle way why not, momo is no saint she also trash talks .This article has served its purpose of stirring up the pot and the fans fell for it:lol:
 

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The interesting comment was the second article that quotes Serena as saying the contenders for the FO are her, Justine and Venus. I hope the hungry players are taking this in and wanting to prove Serena wrong. Might make for some fun!
 

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this article want to start trouble but the second part is almost true
 

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serena got me pumped and psyched, love to hear her talk like that and love it more when she backs it up w/results.
 

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Just another case of an author making a mountain out of a molehill. Oh well good luck Serena. Hopefully the French don't think that she is being arrogant and use it as an excuse to boo her again at Roland Garros.
 
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