Maria Sharapova ended Justine Henin‘s 32-match winning run to advance to the Australian Open semifinals for the fourth straight year. In one of the most consistent performances of her career, fifth-seeded Sharapova thrashed the world number one 6-4 6-0.
Henin, who suffered her last 6-0 rout back in 2002, hasn’t been playing her best tennis in Melbourne and her shaky performance enabled powerful Sharapova to finish the match with such an impressive score. I’m sure the final result surprised everyone!
When asked if she believed Sharapova would win the 2008 Australian Open Henin said:
“I think so. A lot of things can happen (but) she looks like she’s the player who is really confident now, and she has a great chance to do it, I think.”
Henin believes Sharapova has progressed a lot, even from their last meeting at the Sony Ericsson Championships when the Russian played fantastic tennis, but succumbed to then unbeatable Henin in three sets.
In the last four Maria Sharapova will meet we can say a surprising semifinalist Jelena Jankovic, who advanced to the semis with a straight set win over Serena Williams.
The Sharapova vs Jakovic match-up should be tough — the Russian’s form is awesome, while the Serb has shown she can find her best shots when she needs them and progress despite her seeming vulnerability. We can expect an entertaining match, likely a three-setter.