serena routs peer

PARIS - Top-ranked Serena Williams advanced smoothly to the quarterfinals of the French Open by beating Shahar Peer 6-2 6-2 yesterday and Novak Djokovic reached the same stage on the men's side.

PARIS - Top-ranked Serena Williams advanced smoothly to the quarterfinals of the French Open by beating Shahar Peer 6-2 6-2 yesterday and Novak Djokovic reached the same stage on the men's side.

Men's top-ranked Roger Federer also reached the quarterfinals in his bid for a second successive title, beating Olympic doubles partner Stanislas Wawrinka 6-4, 7-6 (5), 6-2.

Federer will next play No 5-seeded Robin Soderling in a rematch of last year's final.

Soderling advanced by beating No 10 Marin Cilic 6-4, 6-4, 6-2.

Williams complained of dizziness from a cold after a seesaw three-set win in her previous match, but the only wobble against the No 18-seeded Peer came at the start.

Williams lost the first seven points, then swept nine in a row.

From 2-all, Williams won five consecutive games to take charge of the match.

Afterward, she was interviewed courtside by former French player Cedric Pioline.

"I love Paris," she told the crowd in French. "My game is better. I hope I'm going to win."

The No 3-seeded Djokovic eliminated the last American in the men's draw, beating Robby Ginepri 6-4 2-6 6-1, 6-2.

Djokovic's next opponent will be No 22 Jurgen Melzer, a first-time Grand Slam quarterfinalist playing in his 32nd major event.

The Austrian advanced by beating qualifier Teimuraz Gabashvili 7-6 (6) 4-6 6-1 6-4.

On another chilly, cloudy, windy afternoon, centre court was half empty for the start of Williams's match against Peer.

Serena's sister Venus, eliminated on Sunday, watched from the stands.

Four-time French Open champion Justine Henin has been upset in the fourth round by Australian Sam Stosur, 2-6 6-1 6-4.

The ended Henin's streak of 24 consecutive victories at Roland Garros.

This was her first appearance at the tournament since ending a 20-month retirement. - Sapa-AP

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