Tennis

Serena, Mauresmo ready to rumble at Roland Garros

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Paris, France (Sports Network) - The biggest match to date on the women's side at the 2003 French Open will occur Tuesday when top-seeded and defending champion of the United States takes on fifth-seeded French crowd favorite in a highly-anticipated quarterfinal showdown on Court Chatrier. Serena is 5-1 lifetime against Mauresmo, but the French star captured their last meeting in a clay-court semifinal in Rome just last month. Earlier in the year, the powerful American prevailed in a title match against Mauresmo right here in Paris at the Open Gaz de France indoor event. The world No. 1 Serena has won 32 straight Grand Slam matches and has only dropped two encounters overall this season, with her other setback coming against -Hardenne in a final in Charleston back in April. Mauresmo, who typically struggles at her home Grand Slam, is enjoying her best-ever showing here. She was a mere 9-8 in her previous trips, including three first-round losses and a trio of second-round setbacks. The hard-hitting Frenchwoman was stunned by Argentine in the fourth round here a year ago. Serena, of course, won the last four Grand Slam events by besting her older sister Venus in each final, including this year's Australian Open and last year's French. Also on Tuesday, world No. 2 will tangle with 24th-seeded Spaniard , the 1994 Wimbledon champion and 2000 Roland Garros runner-up. The 19-year-old Clijsters beat Martinez in the semifinals en route to her prestigious Pacific Life Open title at Indian Wells back in March. Clijsters was the 2001 French Open runner-up to American , who was stunned by unseeded Russian here on Sunday. Clijsters' fellow Belgian Henin-Hardenne will battle eighth-seeded American in yet another marquee quarterfinal, and 22nd-seeded will lock horns with her fellow upstart Russian Petrova, with both players appearing in their first-ever Grand Slam quarter. Rubin upended Henin-Hardenne in a quarterfinal bout in Miami back in March. The rapidly-rising Zvonareva stunned Venus in three sets here on Sunday.

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