Gritty Maria Sharapova books Stuttgart semis berth

Sharapova broke Ivanovic twice in the third, in a sequence of three breaks, before her aggressive game finally wore down the 25-year-old Serb, who reached the world number one ranking just after winning the 2008 French Open title.

updated: April 27, 2013 08:30 IST
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Stuttgart, Germany: Defending champion Maria Sharapova had another tough battle on Friday as she booked her place in the semi-finals of the Stuttgart WTA tournament with a 7-5, 4-6, 6-4 quarter-final win against former world number one Ana Ivanovic.

The 26-year-old Sharapova, who is using the claycourt tournament to help prepare for the defence of her French Open title at the end of May, was again taken to three sets as Ivanovic rallied in the second set.

Having needed three hours to beat Lucie Safarova in Thursday's second round, the statuesque Russian has now played more than five hours of tennis inside 24 hours after needing two hours, 16 minutes to beat Ivanovic.

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  • Tennis
  • Ana Ivanovic
  • Maria Sharapova