In a match that lived up to expectations, Jelen Jankovic overcame Sabine Lisicki 7-5, 5-7, 6-3 in just over 21/4 hours. Jankovic showed that her court coverage was back to the way it used to be as she retrieved so many hard hit balls from the 19 year old Lisicki. She slid, she did the splits and even stood on her head, as she outlasted the game teenager.
Second-seeded Elena Dementieva overcame a slow start to beat Agnes Szavay of Hungary 7-6 (4), 6-1 on Thursday and set up a quarterfinal match against Marion Bartoli at the Porsche Grand Prix.
Bartoli, a former Wimbledon runner-up from France, beat seventh-seeded Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark 7-6 (6), 6-4.
Dementieva, a Russian who is the Olympic champion, fell behind 4-1 before battling back to win the first set. She cruised through the second, but then needed five match points to end it.
“I really had a slow start, it was tough to come back from 4-1 down,” Dementieva said. “I am still finding my feet on clay court. It is my first tournament of the year (on clay) and my footwork needs to improve. It is just important to improve match by match, and make sure I am ready for the French Open.”
The Stuttgart tournament, previously played on a hard surface, has become the first indoor clay event on the circuit and is a warmup for next month’s French Open.