Serena Advances At Indian Wells As Sharapova Crashes

Serena Williams beat Sloane Stephens to reach the quarter-finals of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells, but Maria Sharapova is out.
World number one Serena lost a first set tie-break to her compatriot, but fought back to win 6-7, (7-3), 6-2 and 6-2.
“I’m still trying to find my bearings,” said Serena, 33, who has ended a 14-year boycott of the event. “I have been off a little this week.”
Sharapova was beaten 3-6, 6-3 and 6-2 by defending champion Flavia Pennetta.
Serena had refused to play at Indian Wells after being subjected to racial abuse from the crowd in 2001.
She next faces Switzerland’s Timea Bacsinszky, who beat Elina Svitolina in three sets.


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