Serena Williams had rolled into the quarterfinals of the French Open, bulldozing opponents in straight-sets victories and dropping only 10 games.
But on Tuesday, the quarterfinal round again proved treacherous for Williams, who has lost five times in the quarters at Roland Garros. This time, it was Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova who put up a fight before succumbing to Williams. The world’s No. 1 player advanced to the semis with a 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 victory. Williams, on the cusp of going down two breaks in the third set, won five straight games.
Williams went into the match anticipating a battle. “It will be a good match. The last time we played here she won, so that will probably get her pumped up and she’s on a comeback,” Williams said Sunday.. “She has nothing to lose but everything to gain. And she also wants to do well.
“So it’s not going to be an easy match for me. I’ve had some pretty tough clay-court matches this year and I think for sure that will be another one.”
For a while there, it was. But Williams advanced, winning her 29th straight match.
“I don’t even consider it a streak,” Williams said Sunday. “Everyone says you’re on this streak, but for me it’s just about winning the matches. I don’t care to be on a streak. I don’t care to not be on a streak. I just want to win ‘this match,’ I want to win ‘this match,’ I want to win ‘this match.”’
However she keeps tally, she’s now in the French Open semifinals for the first time since 2003.