Venus Subdues Serena in Indian Wells Match that Doesn't Disappoint; Tuesday Preview

Venus Subdues Serena in Indian Wells Match that Doesn't Disappoint; Tuesday Preview

Venus Subdues Serena in Indian Wells Match that Doesn't Disappoint; Tuesday Preview

In what became her first defeat since her return to the WTA Tour, Serena Williams crashed out of the BNP Paribas Open after falling to her sister, Venus Williams in the third round.

Stephens, who won her first major at Flushing Meadows last fall, lost in the first rounds at the Australian Open and in Sydney before reaching the quarterfinals at Acapulco.

"I definitely know her well, but she definitely played a little bit better than she normally does", she said.

But just as Venus looked in complete control, Serena broke back to reduce the deficit to keep her hopes alive.

But in her first competitive singles match in more than a year, Williams eventually settled into a comfort zone on the way to a satisfying 7-5, 6-3 win over Diyas to advance to the second round of the tournament. "It's always disappointing to me to lose to anyone". Then I wouldn't be who I am.

It's unusual to see the sisters meet at such an early stage of a tournament, but this time, 36-year-old Serena was unseeded, and Venus was seeded eighth.

"It wasn't very easy, obviously", Serena said after the match.

It was 14-year absence before Serena came back in 2015, only to withdraw with a knee injury before her semi-final. "Even though I haven't played that much this year, the matches in the last year count". The head-to-head record is 17-12, still in favour of Serena now.

The two exchanged another a pair of thrilling breaks, with Serena staving off match-point in the process, and then Venus faced a break point that would have levelled the set, 5-5.

Venus blasted six aces but had eight double faults in the one-hour 26-minute main stadium match in front of a crowd of about 13,000. "I didn't really feel comfortable out there today". The pair battled to hold serve to start the match - the opening two services games both featuring break points in the first-ever third-round meeting between the stat duo.

"Missing shots that I never miss, and so close", she said. She won in straight sets by 6-4, 6-4. My room for improvement is incredible. "I don't want to go backwards".

It is for Serena but she is sure to find herself in familiar surroundings - the latter stages of tournaments - soon enough.

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