Sharapova beats Makarova to reach Australian Open semis

2013-01-22 11:36:24 GMT2013-01-22 19:36:24(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

MELBOURNE, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- Maria Sharapova continued her dominating form at the Australian Open with a straight-set win over Russian fellow Ekaterina Makarova here on Tuesday.

The 6-2, 6-2 quarterfinal victory not only set Sharapova up a semifinal encounter with former French Open champion Li Na, but also saw a new record set by the world No. 2 -- Sharapova lost only nine games in five matches.

Sharapova double-bagelled her first two matches 6-0, 6-0, and then beat Venus Williams 6-1, 6-3 and Kirsten Flipkens 6-1, 6-0, beating Monia Seles' Australian Open record of losing 12 games before the semifinals.

"To be honest, those are not the stats you want to be known for," Sharapova said, adding that she was more concerned about adding to her four Grand Slam titles.

Sharapova broke Makarova in the third game of the first set, but Makarova immediately retrieved the break to level at 2-2. But Makarova, who beat 15-time major champion Serena Williams in the fourth round at the Australian Open last year, dropped serve again before Sharapova tore through the remainder of the opening set and never looked back.

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