Jankovic into Rome quarters

ROME: Defending champion Jelena Jankovic advanced to the quarterfinals of the Italian Open on Wednesday when her opponent, Kateryna Bondarenko, retired with an illness.

Jankovic, the third seed, took the first set 6-1, and was 1-0 in the second when the Ukrainian called for the trainer and then pulled out after 35 minutes, citing illness. Jankovic played aggressively throughout the first set, firing winners from both sides of the court and often rushing the net.

The 24-year-old Serb has won the Italian Open for the past two years and is looking to regain best form after a slump at the start of the year.

Also in action at this clay-court warmup for Roland Garros are the top-ranked Dinara Safina, who takes on Zheng Jie of China, and Venus Williams, who plays Anna Chakvetadze in the night session.