- Seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams ousted fourth-seeded birthday girl Victoria Azarenka in straight sets Thursday to reach the quarter-finals of the WTA hardcourt tournament at Stanford.
The 6-4, 7-6 (7/1) triumph kept Williams on course for a possible semi-final showdown with her sister Serena, the world number one and top seed who will take on Ana Ivanovic in the quarter-finals on Friday.
"Williams-Williams tomorrow, hopefully," Venus told the crowd at the campus of Stanford University, where she came out on top in a hard-fought, physical duel with Azarenka that lasted an hour and 42 minutes.
"It's never easy to play Victoria. We've always had extremely tough matches, so I expected that tonight as well," said Williams.