Stosur denies All-Williams semifinal at Family Circle Cup

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CHARLESTON, S.C.— Second-seeded Samantha Stosur beat Venus Williams 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 on Friday, spoiling the chance at all-Williams sister semifinal at the Family Circle Cup.

Serena Williams reached the semis when Sabine Lisicki had to withdraw with a twisted ankle.

Venus hadn’t lost a set in three previous matches and had to get by the reigning U.S. Open champion to set up her first meeting with her younger sister in nearly three years. Venus Williams rallied from a set down and was up 2-1 in the third set before Stosur took control and won five of the final six games.

The win ended a long Friday for Stosur, who finished a rain-delayed third-round match before facing Venus.

Stosur will play Serena Williams today.

Lisicki retired in the first set after rolling her ankle and falling to the court. She received treatment and played three more games before withdrawing in tears.

Serena comforted her opponent on the sideline and applauded with the stadium crowd as Lisicki, the 2009 champion her, left.

“I told her, ‘Don’t cry. You’re going to make me cry, too,’” said Serena, this tournament’s 2008 champion who is ranked No. 10.

Lisicki, the sixth seed, went to the hospital to have an MRI test on her left ankle.

DAVIS CUP: In Roquebrune, France, John Isner defeated Gilles Simon 6-3, 6-2, 7-5, pulling the United States even with France after opening singles in the Davis Cup quarterfinals.

The Americans needed a strong performance from Isner after Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat 19-year-old Ryan Harrison 7-5, 6-2, 2-6, 6-2 to give France the lead.

Simon was called up to replace injured Gael Monfils this week. He has never beaten Isner and could not cope with the American’s big serve. Simon also struggled with his own serve on the outdoor clay at Monte Carlo Country Club.

“I took to the court very confident,” Isner said. “I played very well. Simple as that.”

Today’s doubles in the best-of-five series pits Bob and Mike Bryan against Frenchmen Julien Benneteau and Michael Llodra.

“We’d love to be up 2-0, but 1-1 seems just about right and tomorrow will be a great doubles,” U.S. captain Jim Courier said. “John did what he is supposed to do, which is to be emphatic and dominant.”

In the other quarterfinals, host Czech Republic and Serbia were 1-1; Spain was up 2-0 on visiting Austria; and Croatia led 1-0 at Argentina.

The semifinals will begin in September.


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