Sam storms into quarters

Australia’s Samantha Stosur and China’s Li Na stormed into the women’s quarterfinals at the Madrid Masters on Thursday.

Eighth seed Stosur stopped Swiss Patty Schnyder 7-6(3) 6-2 while Li, the 13th seed at the Caja Magica, put out Alona Bondarenko of the Ukraine in the third round after a 6-3 6-4 win.

Stosur next faces a test against fourth seed Venus Williams, against whom she stands 0-3 from 2007 and 2008 meetings.

Li will play the winner from the unseeded pair of Israeli Shahar Peer and Spain’s Arantxa Parra Santonja.

Stosur remains a huge force on the spring clay after winning 14 of her past 15 matches on the surface, taking the title last month at Charleston and playing the final in Stuttgart against Justine Henin.

The 26 year old from the Gold Coast leads the WTA standings for clay wins in 2010 and will move up to a career-high seventh in the world rankings next Monday, just in time for the countdown to the French Open.

The 2009 Roland Garros semifinalist will arrive in Paris as the highest ranked Australian woman since Wendy Turnbull was classed fifth in February 1984.

“I’ve played well since Indian Wells [in March],” said Stosur, who was broken in the penultimate game by Schnyder, but immediately broke the Swiss back to claim victory.

“That form just translated over to the clay. I’m enjoying my tennis, it’s just one of those things. Once you start winning it doesn’t matter which surface it’s on, it gives you confidence.”

Stosur said that she got better as the contest with Schnyder went on.

“It was even in the first set with no breaks. The key was to hold serve.

“I was feeling very comfortable in the second set. Schnyder is a tricky lefty who likes to hit a loopy ball and play the angles. My strategy was not to give her too many chances.

“I’m feeling really good on the court and of course the confidence is growing.”

  • Tankengine

    Go Samantha
    You are so in the zone right now, Williams will have to play the game of her life. I dont think she can win anyway. I see it in the look in your eyes, I see it in the natural way you are playing right now. I believe you can win this all the way.
    Go Samantha We believe in you

  • Nicole

    Well done Sam!! You're playing so well.
    Next up Venus, you can do it :)

  • Drine

    And another convincing win for Sammy !!! Woohooo ;)
    Very pleasant game to watch with great rallies, nice volleys, sweet dropshots….love it :)
    I wish you the best of luck against Venus, it definitely won't be an easy one but you can do it !!!
    C'mon Sam !!!

  • RW

    Hello Samantha,
    You have done alright in Madrid, but it could have been better.
    Stop your ball selection at every serve, a waste of time, concentrate on game, take one ball at a time – like the your Williams opponent!
    Just keep your condition, no additional muscles, instead get Federer's coach to teach you strategy, precision placement of shots!