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  Tuesday, 22 January, 2002, 10:32 GMT
Super Seles shocks Williams
Monica Seles makes the semi-finals in Melbourne
Monica Seles now faces Martina Hingis in the semi-finals
Monica Seles fought back from a set down to shock second seed Venus Williams and book her place in the last four of the Australian Open.

It was a superb comeback from Seles who produced some scintillating tennis after losing the first set on a tie-break.

Williams, who needed treatment for a thigh injury in the first set produced some trademark power shots, but Seles was full of guile and skill and wrapped up a 6-7 (5-7) 6-2 6-3 victory.

"It was such a tough match," said Seles.

"Both of us were fighting a load of stuff within ourselves. I had a fever but I held up well.

Venus Williams was the tournament favourite
Venus Williams was the tournament favourite

"Venus is such a great champion and I just got lucky at the end there and won a few points.

"It was such a seesaw match and to pull through and stay focused was real good."

Seles, 28, will meet triple champion and third seed Martina Hingis in the semi-finals.

"Now I have to just refocus and rest up and get ready for Martina because it's going to be a very different match than tonight," said Seles.

Williams admitted she had been struggling with injury before and during the game.

"I had pain in the hamstring area. I wasn't quite sure what was going on," Williams said.


Monica deserved to win. She went out there and took it to me
Venus Williams

"It hasn't been the best tournament for me health-wise.

But the number two seed, who suffered tendinitis in her left knee earlier in the tournament and pulled a muscle in the first set, was gracious in defeat.

"She deserved to win," said the 21-year-old.

"She went out there and took it to me and she was the better player."

Seles' victory over Williams was the first by a top 10 player in 16 matches.

The last elite player to beat Williams had was Martina Hingis in the Melbourne semi-finals last year.

Enthralling

There was little to choose between the players in an enthralling first set.

Seles took the early advantage, taking a 2-0 lead, but the number two seed hit straight back to level at 2-2.

In the first set tie-break, Williams produced some superb power tennis to close out a 7-5 winner.

But Seles put paid to expectations of a Williams whitewash with a superb comeback in the second set.

The number eight seed broke Williams twice to storm into a 4-1 lead.

Seles saved a break point in the next before holding and after Williams held to make the score 5-2, Seles produced a scorching backhand to seal the set 6-2

Williams produced an immaculate service game to open the third set, but was broken in the fifth game as Seles edged 3-2 ahead.

Williams then missed three break points to level the match at 4-4.

It proved to be her last chance as Seles wrapped up the set 6-3.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Monica Seles
"It's great when you have wins like today"
Venus Williams
"It's never fun losing"
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22 Jan 02 | Australian Open
Links to more Australian Open stories are at the foot of the page.


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