Dubai Open: Henin in semis

Defending champion Justine Henin led the top three seeds into the Dubai Women's Open semifinals.

updated: March 22, 2007 06:37 IST
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Defending champion Justine Henin led the top three seeds into the Dubai Women's Open semifinals. Henin earned her 14th consecutive win in Dubai 6-0, 6-2 over Eleni Daniilidou of Greece, and is set to meet third-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova for a third straight time in the desert. Henin, playing her second tournament of the year, was delighted with her form after a three-set scare on Wednesday against 16-year-old Tamira Paszek. "It's definitely the best I have played this year. I really needed a match like yesterday's. Today, I was very aggressive, very positive," Henin said. Meanwhile, Second-seed Amelie Mauresmo topped eighth-seeded Daniela Hantuchova 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, and Kuznetsova accounted for sixth-seeded Patty Schnyder 6-3, 6-4. Mauresmo said she went to sleep against Hantuchova in the second set and was grateful for a courtside visit from coach Loic Courteau to shake her up. "I really felt I was in control of the match in the first set," said Mauresmo, the 2005 champ. "But then I told Loic at the end of the second set how asleep I was. I wasn't doing anything in the second set, but I was able to get my rhythm going bit by bit in the third set." Hingis loses However, Martina Hingis, the 2001 champion coming off her 43rd career title in Tokyo, lost 7-6 (3), 6-2 on Thursday to an inspired fifth-seeded Jelena Jankovic. The Swiss player led 4-2 in the first set, but Jankovic dominated thereafter. "It could have been different if I had won the first set. The momentum would have been with me. The first set was key, and then she just played some better shots and was more aggressive in the tiebreak," Hingis said. In Friday's semifinals, Henin meets Kuznetsova with a 12-1 record against the Russian, including victories in the 2004 Dubai final and 2006 semis. Mauresmo, meanwhile, leads Jankovic 4-1 in matchups, but the Serb won their previous outing last month in Sydney.