Serena marches into quarters


PARIS, May 31- Top seed Serena Williams marched into the French Open quarter-finals on Monday with a dominating 6-2, 6-2 win over Israel's Shahar Peer.She will next play Belgium’s Justine Henin should the four-times former champion get past Samantha Stosur of Australia who were playing their fourth round tie out on the Suzanne Lenglen showcourt.

"I am so happy she is playing again," Williams said of Henin. "I would love to play her here again."

The American, who was champion here in 2002, lost the first seven points of the match as she struggled to get to grips with the cold, blustery conditions out on the Philippe Chatrier centre-court.

But she promptly won the next nine as she moved up the gears and then broke Peer for a second time to take a 4-2 lead.

Williams held comfortably to make it 5-2 and then captured the Peer serve for a third straight time to take the first set in just 28 minutes.

Williams squandered three break points to go 2-0 up in the second and had to save two of her own in the following game as the Israeli battled valiantly from behind the baseline to cope with her opponent’s greater weight of shot.

There were no signs of the sickness that had affected Williams in her third round tie against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova with sister Venus and her mother and father lending family support from the players’ section.

Williams continued to dominate the rallies and Peer cracked once again in the fourth game hitting a forehand marginally long to hand Williams the break and a 3-1 lead.

Peer took advantage of a sloppy game from the American to break back in the following game, but she promptly gave that back as Williams pinned her back with her heavy groundstrokes.

From there on in Williams coasted in winning the last eight points of the matc as Peer wilted.

The day’s two remaining fourth round ties sees a second Australian, in the shape of Jarmila Groth, play Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan with the winner playing either fourth seed Jelena Jankovic of Serbia or Slovakian veteran Daniela Hantuchova for a place in the semi-finals.