Ana Ivanovic has reached her third semifinal of the year with a comfortable 6-1 6-3 victory over world No.114 Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan at the Western & Southern Financial Group Women’s Open in Cincinnati.
The 22-year-old Ivanovic didn’t face a break point in the quarterfinal that lasted 57 minutes. Ivanovic was pressurizing Amanmuradova’s serve, who is known for being a good server. Ivanovic’s aggressive returns denied the Uzbekistani all her points on the second serve in the first set.
Ivanovic is partly crediting her recent good results to old friend Marija Lojanica, who joined Ivanovic's staff as a physical fitness coach after Wimbledon. Lojanica is Ivanovic’s first female coach and Ivanovic said how nice it is to have a woman as a coach because they hang out after training and even the routine itself is more fun.
"It's been also a lot fun working out with a girl and just having fun and throwing in a dance or whatever. You know, just actually enjoying it," said the 2008 French Open champion. "She's a girl, so we can go shopping together, watch movies, do our nails. It just keeps your mind off tennis."
Marija Lojanica works with the Serbian Fed Cup team and the two have known each other since Ana was 13.
"In the past I was with male coaches, and you do a job and go back to the room. I really like to read and it was sort of relaxing," Ivanovic added.
"But then after all, you find you have spent all day in a room, and it gets kind of depressing. So it's good to go out and just do a fun girly stuff." (sources: Ana Ivanovic's official website, Reuters; photo: © Neal Trousdale)