Dementieva, Sharapova set title clash

TORONTO: Elena Dementieva avenged a tough Wimbledon defeat with a straight-sets victory over second-seeded Serena Williams to reach the final of the Rogers Cup here on Saturday.

Fourth-seeded Dementieva defeated Williams 7-6 (7/2), 6-1 and will face Russian compatriot Maria Sharapova in final. Former world No 1 Sharapova beat Alisa Kleybanova 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 in the other semi-final. This will be the 11th career meeting between Sharapova and Dementieva. Sharapova has dominated with eight wins and just two losses. Dementieva hasn’t beaten Sharapova since the semi-finals in Los Angeles three years ago.

Dementieva, 27, converted five of her 10 break chances against Williams. After they traded six breaks of serve in the opening set she turned the tide with a dominant victory in the tiebreaker.

Sharapova edged past countrywoman Alisa Kleybanova 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 to secure her spot in the final. With the score tied at 4-4 in the third set, Sharapova broke Kleybanova’s serve before going on to win the match on her own serve.

Cincinnati Masters

CINCINNATI: World No 1 Roger Federer snapped a four-match losing streak against second-ranked Andy Murray to book his berth in the Cincinnati Masters final on Saturday.

Federer downed Murray 6-2, 7-6 (10/8), his first victory against the Scot since his triumph in last year’s US Open final. Since then, Murray had beaten the Swiss superstar four times, including twice this year. In the final, Federer will face fourth-seeded Serb Novak Djokovic who swept past Spain’s Rafael Nadal 6-1, 6-4 in the other semi-final.

Federer noted that Murray’s victories against him tended to follow a similar pattern, with the Scot rallying and playing stronger as the matches progressed. Federer, whose 15 Grand Slam titles include this year’s French Open and Wimbledon crowns, gave Murray little room to maneuver this time and never faced a break point.