First Posted: 6/2/2013
PARIS — Shortly after the start of her fourth-round match at the French Open, Serena Williams double-faulted to give her opponent a chance to break.
The next point lasted 11 strokes, and Williams closed it with a backhand winner down the line that she punctuated with a raised fist and the first of Sunday afternoon’s many shouts of “Come on!”
Williams, it turned out, was already well on her way to the quarterfinals with her 28th consecutive victory, this one by a score of 6-1, 6-3 against 15th-seeded Roberta Vinci of Italy. It’s her most wins in a row as a professional, and the most in a single season by any woman since her sister Venus put together a 35-match run in 2000.
The 15-time Grand Slam champion’s next task is a quarterfinal against two-time major champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, who is ranked 39th and unseeded at Roland Garros. Kuznetsova beat No. 8-seeded Angelique Kerber 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 Sunday.
Kuznetsova won the 2004 U.S. Open and the 2009 French Open, where she defeated Williams in the quarterfinals along the way.
Kuznetsova screamed with joy after her forehand winner on match point against Kerber to improve to 12-2 in three-setters this season. She’s now 41-9 for her French Open career.