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Jankovic derailed by risk-taking Kuznetsova

Latest update : 2008-09-20

Top seed Jelena Jankovic was bundled out of the Pan Pacific Open in a 2-6 7-5 7-5 defeat by Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova in Friday's quarter-finals.

Former world number one Jelena Jankovic and Beijing Olympic gold medallist Elena Dementieva both suffered upset losses in the quarter-finals at the Pan Pacific Open tennis tournament on Friday.

Serbian top seed Jankovic, who was hoping to regain the number one ranking by winning in Tokyo, crashed to a 2-6, 7-5, 7-5 defeat to the 2004 US Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia, fifth seed.

The second-seeded Dementieva, the winner here in 2006, failed to keep an early lead before going down to qualifier Katarina Srebotnik of Slovenia 6-3, 6-4.

Sixth seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland was also beaten by Russia's Nadia Petrova 6-3, 6-0, while fourth seed Dinara Safina of Russia was the best-ranked player to remain after beating qualifier Kaia Kanepi of Estonia 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 6-2.

Kuzunetsova, ranked seventh against Jankovic's second, broke the opening game and then missed six break opportunities before losing the first set.

Jankovic had to crawl back from a break down in each set and at 5-5 in the second set she hit her sixth double fault on an advantage point for Kuznetsova before the Russian held her own to even the score.

Jankovic came back from a break down three times in the final set, but again hit a double-fault at 30-40 in the 11th game to go down 5-6.

Kuznetsova, who avenged her Olympic loss to China's Li Na in the first round, made no mistakes in the following game, hitting a backhand passing shot at 40-30 to finish off the two-hour-26-minute battle.

"It was a tough match for me. I had my opportunities. I wanted to win, of course, it just wasn't my day," said Jankovic, 23, who became the world number one for just one week during the Beijing Olympics.

"She played really solid tennis today. It was very close, unfortunately it went her way.

"The percentage of my serve was getting lower and lower, then in the third set I made a lot of double-faults. I don't know why, maybe because I was a little bit tired."

Kuznetsova said: "She was the most consistent this year, she played very good. It's never easy because she brings all the balls back. I'm very happy with my performance, the way I was attacking all the time."

It was the first time since 2000 Srebotnik has reached the semi-finals here.

"Of course, I was very happy. It's a big win for me. Elena is playing in very, very good form lately, she won the gold medal, so I knew she is really one of the hot players at the moment," she said.

"It's a big deal for me, and that's why I was also happy about it and also making it to the semi-finals in such a big event here, it's a special moment," she added.

Date created : 2008-09-19