Serena Williams Pulls from WTA Paris with Stomach Illness

Posted on February 12, 2005

Top-seeded Serena Williams pulled from the WTA Paris quarterfinals Friday citing a stomach illness.

"I'm not playing because I'm sick and mentally I'm not well," Serena told the Parisian crowd in French on court. "I wanted to play here because it's the first tournament I won and it's very important to me. I love it here."

The withdrawal gave a walkover into the semifinals for unseeded Russian Dinara Safina, younger sister of Marat Safin.

In the semifinals the 18-year-old Safina will face France's Tatiana Golovin, who recorded a win over No. 7 seed Silvia Farina Elia when the Italian retired at 0-6, 0-1 with a right shoulder injury.

Golovin has beaten Safina in both their career encounters, most recently last month in three sets at Gold Coast prior to the Australian Open.

The second semifinal Saturday will see No. 2 Amelie Mauresmo (d. (8) Maleeva in the quarterfinals) against No. 4 Nadia Petrova (d. Bartoli in three). It will be the career-first meeting between the Frenchwoman and Russian.