Venus strolls into third round

NEW YORK Thu Aug 28, 2008 9:38pm BST

Venus Williams of United States watches her return shot to Elena Vesnina of Russia during their match at the U.S. Open tennis tournament at Flushing Meadows in New York, August 28, 2008

Credit: Reuters

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Venus Williams said she was due another U.S. Open victory after a crushing 6-0 6-3 win over Paraguayan Rossana De Los Rios in the second round on Thursday.

Williams, champion in 2000 and 2001, did not get much of a workout in the 59-minute match against the 113-ranked De Los Rios, 32, who has never gone beyond the second round at Flushing Meadows.

"I think I just had a lot more power than she did today," the seventh seed told reporters.

Venus, 28, said she was satisfied with her performance but she was hardly tested. She made 17 unforced errors and squandered four match points on her serve at 5-3 up before finally claiming victory on the fifth.

Although her fourth-seeded sister Serena said this week her second title in 2002 was so long ago she could not even recall holding the trophy, Venus said she had no trouble remembering her last in 2001.

"I won't forget, but I'd like to have a more recent memory, as of like '08. So that's pretty much the goal," said Williams, who won her fifth Wimbledon singles title in July.

"I guess, (I'm) kind of overdue, but you've got to win it to deserve it."

In the third round, Venus will meet Alona Bondarenko of Ukraine, the 27th seed who defeated Sabine Lisicki of Germany in three sets.

The Williams sisters, who won their second Olympic doubles crown at the Beijing Games 11 days ago, are seeded to meet in the quarter-finals.

Venus has won three of the last four Wimbledon championships but has not reached the final of one of the other grand slam tournaments since the Australian Open in 2003.

(Editing by Rex Gowar)

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