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Page last updated at 15:08 GMT, Friday, 26 June 2009 16:08 UK

Dementieva powers past Kulikova

Date: 22 June - 5 July
Coverage: BBC One, BBC Two, BBC HD, Red Button, website streaming (UK only) and text commentary, 5 Live, 5 Live Sports Extra, BBC iPlayer
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Kulikova win was good test - Dementieva

Fourth seed Elena Dementieva eased into the fourth round after seeing off fellow Russian Regina Kulikova 6-1 6-2.

The reigning Olympic champion sailed through the opener and despite a break in the second set, wrapped up the win.

Eighth seed Victoria Azarenka edged out Sorana Cirstea and 10th seed Nadia Petrova battled past Gisela Dulko.

Seeds Marion Bartoli and Dominika Cibulkova both lost, while injury forced Vera Zvonareva to withdraw ahead of her clash with Virginie Razzano.

Cibulkova, world ranked 14, lost in three tight sets to Russian Elena Vesnina 5-7 6-4 4-6, while Frenchwoman Bartoli, 12th seed, was stunned in a straight-sets defeat to Italian 29-year-old Francesca Schiavone 6-7 (5-7) 0-6.


It was tough luck on the injured 24-year-old Zvonareva, who reached the semi-finals of this year's Australian Open.

Her enforced exit was not a big surprise though. She has struggled since injuring her right ankle in April which ruled her out for eight weeks and meant she missed the French Open.

Dementieva, 26 and another star from Moscow, blew her opponent away in the first set as she conceded just one game.

After breaking at the start of the second, Dementieva was in cruise-control but Kulikova showed signs of her potential talent when she broke back to level at 1-1.

It was an effort appreciated by the Court One crowd, but Dementieva reasserted her dominance and was soon serving out to wrap up the win.

Dementieva, who next plays Vesnina, told BBC Sport: "I was focused and very aggressive and I am satisfied with the way I am playing.

Highlights - Azarenka sees off Cirstea

"Even in a match that finished 6-1 6-2 we had some good rallies and it was a good match to prepare for the tougher matches that are coming up."

Commenting on Kulikova, who had come through qualifying and then won two matches on her Grand Slam debut, Dementieva added: "She is a very good player. She was very impressive through the whole week.

"Maybe I was too aggressive for her and just didn't really give her a chance to play her game.

"I'm sure it was a very nervous moment for her to step on to Court One, such a big stadium, and play for the first time. I think she needs some experience for sure."

Petrova, 27, took a long time to settle against the unseeded Dulko, with the elegant Argentine grabbing the first set.

However, Dulko, who dumped out Maria Sharapova in the previous round, looked increasingly tense and after losing the second set, her errors proved costly, despite a valiant effort in the final game of the match.

Petrova came through 3-6 6-3 6-4 and next plays Azarenka.

Eighth seed Azarenka of Belarus remained dominant throughout her 7-5 6-3 victory over Romanian Cirstea, world ranked 28.

Victoria Azarenka
Azarenka was a popular winner on Centre Court on Friday

The 19-year-old, who reaches round four for the first time in three visits, told BBC Sport: "It was a good match and there were a lot of tight moments.

"I was a little shaky to start with on Centre Court but I'm happy I hung on. I am happy to be in the next round and hope to keep going the same way."

Slovakian Daniela Hantuchova had few problems in seeing off Japanese doubles partner Ai Sugiyama 6-4 6-3 to make the fourth round.

Hantuchova, unseeded at Wimbledon for the first time since 2004, recovered from an early break and admitted afterwards she had said sorry for beating her.

"It's never a nice feeling having to play Sugi because she's one of my best friends," said Hantuchova.

"She's a great person so winning or losing I knew always it was going to be a strange feeling for me, so I just tried to take it as another match and not to think that she was on the other side."

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see also
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Serena sweeps into fourth round
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Federer comes through first test
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Djokovic shines in win over Fish
26 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Dementieva powers past Kulikova
26 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Mixed fortunes for GB in doubles
26 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Slick Venus eases past Bondarenko
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Sharapova edged out in thriller
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Dementieva knocked out in Paris
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Wimbledon: Live map
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26 Jun 07 |  Results
Women's singles results
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Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis
Women's singles draw
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