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Page last updated at 15:26 GMT, Sunday, 16 May 2010 16:26 UK

Aravane Rezai shocks Venus Williams at Madrid Open

Aravane Rezai
Rezai produced a spectacular display of power tennis to claim her third title

Aravane Rezai of France, the world number 24, stunned Venus Williams 6-2 7-5 to capture the Madrid Open title.

Rezai broke her American opponent twice to take the first set with ease and fought back from 5-2 down in the second to win in one hour, 42 minutes.

It was the unseeded 23-year-old's third career title after triumphs in Strasbourg and Bali last year.

Despite the defeat, Williams, who turns 30 next month, will return to number two in the world rankings on Monday.

"I just cannot believe this," said Rezai. "She played very well and I've always respected her as a player and a champion. I just tried my best today and it worked well for me."

Rezai blasted winners from all corners of the court and won 100% of points on her first serve as she took the opening set in less than half an hour.


Williams rallied in the second and stormed into a 5-2 lead but Rezai refused to be subdued.

She saved five set points before squaring the match at 5-5 and pushed on to take the title on her first match point.

A shocked Williams, winner of nine clay titles, uttered just one sentence at the presentation ceremony.

"She played well, congratulations," said the five-time Wimbledon champion.

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see also
Venus to take on Rezai in final
15 May 10 |  Tennis
Federer win sets up Nadal final
15 May 10 |  Tennis
Murray loses in Madrid last eight
15 May 10 |  Tennis
Federer secures semi-final place
14 May 10 |  Tennis
Serena struggles in Madrid loss
12 May 10 |  Tennis
Safina suffers shock Madrid exit
10 May 10 |  Tennis

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