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Sharapova and Kuznetsova power through

  • Story Highlights
  • Maria Sharapova and Svetlana Kuznetsova through to French Open last 16
  • Top seed Sharapova finally finds her form to beat Italy's Karin Knapp 7-6 6-0
  • Fourth seed Kuznetsova drops just three games to overpower Nadia Petrova
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(CNN) -- Top seed Maria Sharapova finally found some form at the French Open to clinch a place in the fourth round at Roland Garros, while Russian compatriot Svetlana Kuznetsova was also in ruthless form to secure her spot.

Sharapova finally found some form at Roland Garros to ease past Karin Knapp in her third round match.

Sharapova was taken to three sets in both of her opening matches, but showed huge improvement in her 7-6 6-0 win over 32nd-seeded Italian Karin Knapp on Philippe Chatrier court.

She will next play 13th seed and fellow-Russian Dinara Safina, who was a 6-2 7-5 winner over Chinese qualifier Jie Zheng.

Elsewhere in the third round, fourth seed Kuznetsova was in ruthless mood as she disposed of another Russian, Nadia Petrova, with the loss of just three games.

Kuznetsova, the runner-up at Roland Garros in 2006, was highly impressive in her 69-minute 6-2 6-1 victory over the 25th seed.

"I thought I played really consistently," said the 2004 US Open winner. "I was trying not to make unforced errors in the first two or three shots. Not to rush too much.

"I definitely think I have a chance to win the title. Why not? There are a few players who have a shot to win it and I hope one of them is me."

Kuznetsova, who is scheduled to meet Sharapova in the semifinals, next plays Victoria Azarenka, the 16th seed from Belarus, who thrashed Francesca Schiavone 6-1 6-1 on Suzanne Lenglen court.

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In the bottom half of the draw, third seed Jelena Jankovic quickly wrapped up her match against Dominika Cibulkova that was held over from Friday, when bad light forced play to be suspended.

The Serbian resumed a set and 4-2 ahead against the 28th seed from Slovakia, and won two of the next three games to clinch a 7-5 6-3 victory. She will now play Agnieszka Radwanska in the fourth round.

The women's draw has really opened up now after both Serena and Venus Williams were sent crashing on Friday, with Serena's departure ensuring there will be a new name on the trophy this year.

Fifth seed Serena had gone into the clay court grand slam with high hopes but lost 6-4 6-4 to 27th-seeded Slovenian Katarina Srebotnik, who will now play 10th seed Patty Schnyder.

Meanwhile, eight seed Venus was despatched 7-5 6-3 by 26th seed Flavia Pennetta in the final match on Friday the day and the Italian will now face Spanish qualifier Carla Suarez Navarro for a last eight place.

Fourth round line-up

Maria Sharapova (Rus) (1) v Dinara Safina (Rus) (13)

Vera Zvonareva (Rus) (11) v Elena Dementieva (Rus) (7)

Svetlana Kuznetsova (Rus) (4) v Victoria Azarenka (Blr) (16)

Petra Kvitova (Cze) v Kaia Kanepi (Est)

Flavia Pennetta (It) (26) v Carla Suarez Navarro (Sp)

Agnieszka Radwanska (Pol) (14) v Jelena Jankovic (Srb) (3)

Katarina Srebotnik (Slv) (27) v Patty Schnyder (Swi) (10)

Petra Cetkovska (Cze) v Ana Ivanovic (Srb) (2)

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