Sunday, December 8, 2019
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Wozniacki hails semi-final rival Venus

Dubai: Former world number one and 2011 Dubai champion Caroline Wozniacki says she will focus entirely on her own game when she faces two-time winner Venus Williams in their Dubai Duty Free Women’s Open semi-final on Friday.

Wozniacki easily beat Sorana Cirstea on Thursday to set up a meeting with Williams, who had earlier powered her way to a 6-3, 7-5 win over Italian qualifier Flavia Pennetta.

The American holds a perfect winning record against Wozniacki from their four meetings so far, but the last time the two met was at the Miami Masters in 2008, preceded by a series of three meetings in 2007.

“Venus is a great, great player. You always know going out to play against her is not going to be easy. She has won so much and, for me, I just need to go out there and be focused on myself and my own game and give it my all. We will then see what happens,” Wozniacki said.

The Dane recounted an incident when she was a junior player and the Williams sisters had already made their mark on the WTA Tour. “I remember growing up in the juniors and I would say to my dad ‘Oh, this girl has a good serve’. And my dad was like ‘What? No, it’s not Venus or Serena on the other side. Come on, no one has good serves on the junior tour’,” she said.

“Then I made it to the WTA Tour and I was playing Venus for the first time and before the match I’m like ‘Okay dad. Give me the tactics, I’m actually playing Venus now and so what am I supposed to do on that return?’. And he goes ‘Oh, well, I don’t know. Suit yourself out there’. I remember that. We just had a good laugh about it.

“I had some close matches with her [Venus] back then, but a lot has changed and it’s going to be a good match tomorrow [Friday].”