TORONTO — Top-seeded Serena Williams eased into the Rogers Cup semifinals by overpowering Slovakia’s Magdalena Rybarikova 6-1, 6-1 on Friday.
Williams, coming off a seventh tournament victory of the last month in the Swedish Open, had seven aces and finished off Rybarikova in just 60 minutes.
“I’m definitely feeling pretty good, playing much better than I have the past month I would say,” Williams said. “I’m glad I’m getting back to the feeling and getting into some rhythm.”
The two-time Rogers Cup champion will face third-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland, a 7-6 (1), 7-5 winner over fifth-seeded Sara Errani of Italy.
“It’s a good matchup,” Williams said. “She does everything so well. She’s playing better too actually so she’s having a much better year. It’s definitely not going to be easy. I can only hope that I play well and I can only hope that I come out on top.”
In the other quarterfinals, fourth-seeded Li Na of China beat Slovakia’s Dominika Cibulkova 7-6 (1), 6-2; and Romania’s Sorana Cirstea upset sixth-seeded defending champion Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic 4-6, 7-5, 6-2.
Radwanska earned a measure of revenge after she was eliminated by Errani in the French Open quarterfinals.
Radwanska and Errani traded breaks virtually the entire first set before Radwanska took the tiebreaker after a smooth volley drop and wide return from Errani on set point. The two players again traded breaks in the second set until Radwanska held serve at 6-5 when Errani returned long on double match point.
Radwanska closed it out in just over two hours, avoiding any repeat of their 2012 meeting at the WTA Championship — an epic 3½-hour, three-set victory for Radwanska.
Cirstea knocked off former top-ranked players Jelena Jankovic and Caroline Wozniacki to reach the quarterfinals.
“It’s probably (my) best tournament in a long, long time,” Cirstea said. “It might come as a surprise to many people … I don’t think for me and my team it’s such a big surprise because we have been working consistently on things.”
Kvitova double-faulted 10 times, her ninth coming on a break point for Cirstea to open the third set 1-0.
“The beginning of the second set I started to feel a little bit low of the energy,” Kvitova said. “The serve was really bad after this, and I didn’t find energy from my legs.”
Li, a finalist last year, needed 96 minutes to get past Cibulkova, who came into the tournament on a roll with a recent title victory over Radwanska in Stanford, California.
Li broke to make it 6-5 in the first set, taking the game with a cross-court winner, but couldn’t hold and needed a tiebreaker to win the set. She cruised through the second set en route to her first semifinal berth since losing at Stuttgart in April.