Aleksandra Wozniak comes Close but Falls to Venus Williams in Miami

Canadian unable to convert a match point against seven-time Grand Slam champion 

Aleksandra Wozniak (Blainville, QC) came within one point of knocking out American tennis legend Venus Williams on Sunday in the third round of the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, Florida, a combined ATP Masters 1000 and WTA Premier event. 

The 24-year-old Canadian, ranked no. 65 on the WTA Tour rankings, served for the match at 5-4 in the third set and held a match point at 40-30 which she failed to convert when her forehand from the middle of the court found the net. After the players split the first two sets by identical 6-4 scores, Wozniak jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the final set, an advantage she maintained until serving for the match in the ninth game.

The 2 hour, 53 minute marathon match ended in the third set tiebreak when Williams hit a serve Wozniak couldn’t get back and the seven-time Grand Slam champion escaped with a 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(5) victory to reach the round of 16 in her first tournament since last year’s U.S. Open. Wozniak broke Williams’ serve seven times, but was unable to hold her own serve when it mattered most. 

Wozniak came into the contest on a seven-match win streak having won the Nassau Challenger in the Bahamas before coming to Key Biscayne where she was given a main draw wildcard. Her run to the third round, which included a three set win over Monica Niculescu of Romania, will allow her to move close to the Top 60 in the world rankings. 

Raonic out of Miami with an ankle injury

Meanwhile, Milos Raonic (Thornhill, ON) was forced to withdraw from his third round match on Sunday against world No. 4 Andy Murray of Great Britain because of an ankle injury. He rolled his ankle in practice on Saturday before taking to the court for his second round doubles match which he ultimately retired from. Raonic will take a few days off before beginning his preparation for the clay court season. He hopes to be ready for the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters in April.

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