At the ladies' tournament in Rome, Serena Williams played her first match since her Aussie Open win, and the American number 1 came out on top, defeating Timea Bacsinszky 7-6 (2), 6-1. In Williams' section of the draw, Maria Kirilenko upset 5th seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-4 in the third and will play Dominika Cibulkova, a straight set winner.
In the loaded 2nd quarter of the draw, Venus Williams advanced to the Round of 16 with a quick 2 and 2 win against Patty Schnyder. Her 4th round opponent will be Shahar Peer a 3-set comeback winner over Polona Hercog. Yanina Wickmayer and Jelena Jankovic will face off in a block-buster match after both women fought hard to earn 3-set wins over Aravane Rezai and Bethanie Mattek-Sands, respectively.
It's quite obvious that Ana Ivanovic's career has suffered a severe downslide, but her win over 9th-seeded Victoria Azarenka, her first win over a top-tenner since Linz in 2008, was an extremely positive note in an extremely depressing year thus far. The 6-4, 6-4 victory gave the Serb her first back-to-back wins since the Australian in January. But things won't get easier for Ana, as her next opponent will be another hard-hitting blonde in Elena Dementieva, also a straight set winner. Dinara Safina's comeback from a devastating back injury hasn't gone as planned, as the Russian fell in 3 sets to Alexandra Dulgheru. Dulgheru will face Nadia Petrova in the 4th round.
In the 4th quarter, Agnieszka Radwanska thwarted Roberta Vinci and Caroline Wozniacki crushed Maria Elena Camerin. Both ladies lost just one game in their matches and will take on Lucie Safarova and Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, respectively.