Safin ends the Dokic fairytale with fighting victoryJanuary 27th, 2009 - 7:07 pm ICT by IANS
Melbourne, Jan 27 (DPA) Third seed Dinara Safina brought the improbable dream run of Jelena Dokic to an end in the Australian Open quarter-finals, defeating the resurrected home player 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 Tuesday.Dokic, a one-time number four now ranked 187 and climbing fast, could not continue the magic as she fell to the Russian with a final set lasting for nearly an hour.
Safina hopes now that the crowd support at the Rod Laver Arena might shift over to her when she plays a semi-final against compatriot Vera Zvonareva, a winner over France’s Marion Bartoli 6-3, 6-0.
“I’m sorry I had to beat your Australian,” said a player in the chase for a possible move up to number one with a tournament title at the weekend.
“I hope you will be behind me now, I’m sorry. Who deserves to win, will win, but I hope it’s a great match.”
The see-saw struggle between Dokic and Safina featured 31 break points but only 11 converted. The closing stages were drama-filled after Djokovic had clawed back after losing the opening set.
In the third, Dokic saved three break points before falling on a fourth as Safina took 5-4 command. A game later, the Russian advanced on her first match points as a weary Dokic plowed a forehand into the net after wasting two break points.
Dokic, who sunk to the depths without a ranking as recently as two years ago, was playing at the home event for the first time since 2006 when she lost in the first round.