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Friday, June 22, 2007
Henin routs Bartoli; Mauresmo advances in walkover

Associated Press

EASTBOURNE, England -- Defending champion Justine Henin needed less than an hour to beat Marion Bartoli 6-1, 6-3 Friday to reach the final of the Eastbourne International.

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Henin will face Amelie Mauresmo, who advanced when Nadia Petrova retired with an injury after losing the first set 6-4.

The top-seeded Henin broke serve immediately to go up 2-0 in the first set, and then hit a backhand winner down the line to earn a second break for 5-1. Henin served out for the set, holding off the only break point she faced in the match when Bartoli made a backhand error.

"I had a very good first set," Henin said. "I played very consistent and could move her a lot, and then I lost a little bit of my intensity for a few games."

Bartoli offered more resistance in the second set behind a strong serve and tied Henin at 3-3 before the top-ranked Belgian won the last three games.

Henin clinched the win on her second match point, when Bartoli's backhand sailed long.

Mauresmo was in control throughout the first set, breaking for 4-2 when her opponent netted a backhand volley.

"I'm here to play sets and matches so it would probably have been good to have another set, but I just take it the way it is," Mauresmo said. "I'm definitely happy about the way I played. I have still to work on the serve, but overall I'm happy to be on the grass and having the opportunity to maybe get another title."

Petrova hurt her pectoral muscle during Thursday's quarterfinal against Sybille Bammer. She said she felt pain when she served and did not want to risk further damage before Wimbledon, which begins Monday.

"This morning I had a difficult time warming up," she said. "I couldn't do any serves."