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Williams made to work again

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:20

The world number five had uncharacteristically spent more than five hours on the court during her first two matches in the competition, needing three sets to overcome a pair of unseeded opponents.

Williams outlasted Nuria Llagostera Vives in a two hours and 25 minute encounter on Tuesday and needed two hours and 43 minutes to get past 160th-ranked Greta Arn on Wednesday.

It was more of the same against the world number 28 Szavay, who battled for just over two hours before eventually losing. The 28-year-old came into this event after winning her 40th career title last weekend in Dubai and extended her winning streak to eight matches after ousting Szavay in their first-ever encounter.

Williams is the only seeded player left in her half of the draw following the second-round upsets of number three seed Carla Suarez-Navarro of Spain and number five seed Gisela Dulko of Argentina.

World number 71 Barbora Zahlavova Strycova from the Czech Republic will be Williams` next opponent after rallying to complete a 4-6 7-5 6-1 victory over 103rd-ranked Estonian Maret Ani in the section’s other quarter-final.

Second seed and defending champion Flavia Pennetta continued her march toward another title after earning a 2-6 6-3 6-0 triumph over unseeded Czech player Petra Cetkovska in a last eight clash in the bottom of the draw.

The 27-year-old Italian has reached the championship match in each of the past five years, claiming a title in 2005.

The only other seed remaining in the field is fourth-seeded Iveta Benesova, who will meet Pennetta in the semi-finals after cruising to a 6-1 6-3 victory against Frenchwoman Mathilde Johansson.

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