Venus knocks out Serena, Wozniacki marches on in Indian Wells

Venus Williams and Serena Williams talk as they play during a match

Pic: Getty Images (Venus Williams withdrew from the 2001 tournament, which Serena Williams went on to win) Serena Williams will play her sister Venus at Indian Wells, 17 years after a scheduled meeting at the tournament sparked a 14-year boycott.

Serena, who lifted her 23rd Grand Slam title in Melbourne previous year, was then already pregnant with daughter Alexis Olympia, who was born in September. It was one of Serena's 41 unforced errors, including 17 on the forehand side.

The Williams sisters renewed their great sibling rivalry on Monday - the pair going head-to-head for the 29th time.

And when Venus, accompanied by her father Richard, took her seat to watch her sister play Kim Clijsters in the final two days later, the atmosphere turned sour.

"I mean, she looked like she never lost a step", Venus said of her younger sister.

"I'm just lucky that I've played more matches than her right now, otherwise, yeah", Venus said.

The early meeting is the result of Serena Williams being unranked and not being among the tournament's 32 seeded female players because of her maternity leave. You know, I'm getting there. So, I'm going to wait and see what happens.

Presently unseeded Serena was the world No.1 when she began her long vacation from the game, following her victory at the 2017 Australian Open, where she was already expecting daughter Alexis Olympia, who was born in September.

Wozniacki had been one of seven women who held the No. 1 ranking who hadn't won a Grand Slam when she triumphed in Melbourne in January. "Seventeen years seems like forever ago".

"That's totally gone out of my mind", she said. Then she faced the tough Kiki Bertens, and Serena made it through that match in straight sets as well.

"I can't really replicate the situation no matter how much I do in practice".

"She gave me the trophy because I was so upset". I really abhor every time we play, but I do enjoy the battle when I'm out there.

Elsewhere on Saturday, fourth seeded Elina Svitolina defeated Germany's Mona Barthel 6-4, 6-3.

In the men's section, Spanish veteran Fernando Verdasco used his powerful serve to upset third seed Grigor Dimitrov 7-6 (4) 4-6 6-3 while Roger Federer's tournament debut was hampered by rain.

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