Serena Williams will play Maria Sharapova

Serena Williams beat Russian Maria Kirilenko, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2, at the Bank of the West Classic to set up a quarterfinal match with Maria Sharapova in a battle of former world No. 1s.

“I’m sure we’ll both go out and do the best each of us can,” Williams said. “It’s nothing personal. It’s my job and I want to get paid. I leave it on the court.”

Williams is playing her third tournament since winning at Wimbledon last year, and the first tournament on U.S. soil since the 2009 U.S. Open. She missed nearly a year following right foot surgery. Williams also had blood clots in her lungs, and another surgery to remove a pool of blood under her skin.

She took a medical timeout during her match against Kirilenko to get her left ankle retaped after a blister formed.


Kirilenko took advantage to win the second set and take the first game of the third.

“I was a little sluggish out there,” Williams said. “I got upset and started playing well enough to win. I started out fine, but after that injury timeout I was sluggish.”

In another match, New Zealand’s Marina Erakovic stunned top-seeded and defending champion Victoria Azarenka of Belarus, 4-6, 7-5, 6-2 to reach her second quarterfinal of the year.



Top-seeded Shahar Peer of Israel beat Russia’s Alla Kudryavtseva, 6-1, 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinals at the WTA Citi Open at College Park, Md.

Peer, ranked 24th, had not made it to a quarterfinal since early March at the BNP Paribas Open. Her opponent in Friday’s quarterfinal will be eighth-seeded Alberta Brianti of Italy, who ousted American Varvara Lepchenko, 6-1, 6-2.


Second-seeded Stanislas Wawrinka advanced to the quarterfinals of his home Swiss Open in Gstaad, beating Peter Luczak of Australia, 6-3, 7-5.


Dodgers’ Jansen out of hospital

Kenley Jansen, the Dodgers right-hander who experienced an irregular heartbeat after Tuesday’s game, was released from the hospital Thursday.

Jansen spent the past two nights at White Memorial Hospital. When he did not respond to medication, he was put under anesthesia and had his heart shocked back into its proper rhythm.


The Dodgers said Jansen will be reevaluated when he rejoins the team Friday at Dodger Stadium.

— Steve Dilbeck

North Carolina is now looking for a new football coach and athletic director.

A day after the school fired Butch Davis amid an NCAA investigation into his program, Dick Baddour said he will step down after 14 years as athletic director.

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