Dementieva stays in chase for number one ranking

January 28th, 2009 - 1:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Serena WilliamsMelbourne, Jan 28 (DPA) Elena Dementieva kept her dream of a possible number one WTA ranking alive as she stormed past Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro 6-2, 6-2 and into her first semi-final at the Australian Open here Wednesday.”It only took me ten years to get here,” joked the Russian fourth seed who spent just over 90 minutes in 39.5 degrees Celsius heat as summer weather took hold in Melbourne,

The Russian secured her victory in the hot conditions, but officials closed the roof of the Rod Laver arena after the first set of the second semi between Svetlana Kuznetsova and Serena Williams, puzzling Dementieva.

“When you see a forecast (for 44 Celsius) the hottest week in a month, why not close the roof? Not only for the players, but for the spectators, as well.

“I think if you have a roof, why not use it?”

The two-time Grand Slam finalist in Paris and New York said she was glad to get the job done against Spain’s pocket rocket, who began her run with a second-round knockout of Venus Williams.

“It was very tough to play because of the weather condition,” said the player who stands 15-0 with two titles so far in 2009. “My opponent is very strong physically, a very fit player.

“Playing her for the first time, I didn’t know what to expect. Maybe it looked easy, but an hour and a half for 6-2, 6-2 is a pretty long match.”

The Russian will likely be working on her serve before the Thursday semi after firing ten double-faults and committing 24 unforced errors.

Dementieva saved ten break points while breaking her Spanish opponent on four of five occasions.

Dementieva is thick in the chase for top ranking honours, with the spot now occupied by Serb Jelena Jankovic changing hands Monday if Dementieva, Williams or Russian Dinara Safina can win the tournament.

“Everyone is thinking about the possibility of reaching number one, that’s an extra motivation for all of us. That’s why I guess we’re all trying very hard to win this one.”

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