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French Open

Ivanovic and Jankovic in all-Serbian semi

  • Story Highlights
  • Serb rivals Ana Ivanovic and Jelena Jankovic meet in French Open semis
  • Ana beats Patty Schnyder and Jelena ousts Carla Suarez Navarro both 6-3 6-2
  • Svetlana Kuznetsova beats Victoria Azarenka 6-2 6-3 to reach last eight
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PARIS, France -- Serbian rivals Ana Ivanovic and Jelena Jankovic set up a semifinal showdown at the French Open with matching 6-3 6-2 victories at Roland Garros on Tuesday

Second seed Ana Ivanovic eased through against Patty Schnyder of Switzerland while third-ranked Jankovic ousted 19-year-old Spanish qualifier Carla Suarez Navarro also with plenty in hand.

The semi rivals have met six times with Ivanovic winning five of them but it will be their first meeting at a Grand Slam tournament.

"We have played many times before, and we always have tough matches," Ivanovic said of her compatriot.

"I think we have played only once on green clay and never at a Grand Slam.

"It's going to be an interesting match and at least we have one Serbian for sure in the final."

Ivanovic has yet to lose a set in five matches and said: "I am really happy the way I'm playing. I just want to keep this level."

The 20-year-old Ivanovic lost to Justine Henin in straight sets in the final last year and to Maria Sharapova in the Australian Open final in January.

Ivanovic broke early to lead 2-0, but the 29-year-old 10th seed, playing in her 48th Grand Slam tournament and 13th straight at Roland Garros, drew level at 2-2.

The Serb took the first set 6-3 and she immediately broke to love in the opening game of the second.

Schnyder had three break points on the Ivanovic serve in the following game, but the Serb had her back-pedalling frantically as she battled back to hold on for a 2-0 lead.

The Swiss player survived a marathon game on her following serve but two games later two poor drop shots allowed Ivanovic to clinch the double break.

At 4-1 up and her own serve to come there was no stopping her although she hit her second and third double-faults of the match in the final game before smacking a service winner on the third match point.

"I started to rush," she said. "I was happy to calm down and still win the game."

Following Monday's defeat of top seed Maria Sharapova, Ivanovic is assured of taking the world No.1 spot for the first time if she lifts the title.

Fourth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova became the third Russian to qualify for the last eight when she completed a 6-2 6-3 victory over Victoria Azarenka of Belarus.

The match was halted on Monday evening when the former US Open champion led 6-2 2-2 against the 18-year-old former world junior champion.

In the quarterfinals Kuznetsova will face the unseeded Kaia Kanepi of Estonia who overcame Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic 6-3 3-6 6-1 in another tie left unfinished on Monday.

Kuznetsova has lost only 19 games in four rounds, sweeping every set.

"I just feel very comfortable playing here and really focus on myself," she said . "I feel like I mature as the years go by, and I'm just really enjoying myself here."

She was runner-up to Justine Henin at Roland Garros in 2006.

Kanepi, ranked 49th, began the tournament with a lifetime Grand Slam record of 5-8. She beat two seeded players -- No. 6 Anna Chakvetadze and No. 29 Anabel Medina Garrigues -- en route to the final eight.

"I have been believing in myself that I can play top players for a long time," said Kanepi, 22. "I was hoping for a breakthrough some day."

Kanepi said her latest victory would be big news in Estonia, and she expected plenty of messages from family and friends.

"My phone is still switched off, because I think there will be a lot," she said with a smile. "I'm waiting for when I'm a little relaxed."

In the other women's quarterfinal Wednesday, No. 13-seeded Dinara Safina will try to build on her upset victory Monday against top-ranked Maria Sharapova.

Safina overcame deficits of 5-2 in the second set and 5-2 in the second tiebreaker to win 6-7 (6) 7-6 (5) 6-2.

Sharapova, stymied again at the only major tournament she has yet to win, lost the final four games and 10 of the last 12 points.

"It was all in her hands," Safina said. "Then suddenly it changed."

Safina, the younger sister of two-time Grand Slam champion Marat Safin, received a congratulatory text from her brother and said she hopes to join him as the winner of a major title.

"A dream of all our family," she said. "Once we do this, we can put the racket on the wall and say we did everything we could."

Safina will next play No. 7 Elena Dementieva, who won another all-Russian matchup against No. 11 Vera Zvonareva, 6-4 1-6 6-2.

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