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Weeding out weaklings at the Family Circle Cup

Friday Highlights

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The field of 56 professional women tennis players that started this year’s Family Circle Cup was chiseled down to a mere eight players for the Friday’s quarter final matches. Bracket 1 saw Caroline Wozniacki, the No. 1 seeded player in the world take on the No. 6 seed Yanina Wickmayer, followed by young Christina McHale against No. 3 seeded Jelena Jankovic. In Bracket 2, Sania Mirza played Peng Shuai in the day’s third match and Elena Vesnina’s meet with Julia Goerges was the evenings last match under the lights. The day was kicked off by a friendly mixed doubles match between Murphy Jensen and Shelby Rogers versus Ryan Young and Kveta Peschke. The players wore microphone headsets to interact with the crowd, but it was Murphy who stole the show with his on-court wit and for letting a ball boy sit in for him while he took a mid-set break.

The first match of the tournament started with Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki against Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer. Wickmayer came out strong taking the first set but she couldn’t hold off the strength and determination of Wozniacki who rallied to take the next two sets to advance to Saturday’s semi-finals. The second match of the day pitted young Christina McHale, the last American in the tournament, against No. 3 seeded Jelena Jankovic. McHale played well but was no match for the dominating speed and footwork of Jankovic, who controlled the entire match.

Sania Mirza of India was bested by China’s Peng Shuai in the day’s third match. Mirza took the first set but was unable to finish Mirza off allowing the No. 11 seeded player to win the next two sets to secure her spot in the semifinals. After winning a huge upset over last year’s FCC winner to get to the quarter finals, Elena Vesnina and Julia Goerges of Germany met for the final match of the day to figure out who would occupy the fourth and final spot of Saturday’s semifinals. Vesnina found herself down after the first set to the No. 11 ranked Goerges, but rallied with passion and well placed shots to take the last two sets.

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