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By Rob Peterson
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12th seeded Chilean Fernando Gonzalez continued his dream run at the 2009 French Open with an exciting four sets win over championship's third seed and one of the strongest contendors for the title, Andy Murray.
In a match that saw Gonzalez dominate Murray in every aspect of the game, the Scot could do little to deny Gonzalez his first ever Roland Garros semifinal, bowing out 3-6, 6-2, 0-6, 4-6 - Relive the excitement of this major upset in the men's draw @ Match Commentary.
"I guess he's a better claycourt player," admitted Murray.
"I think I had my chances but didn't take them and he came up with some big shots in the mean time."
Earlier in the day, Rafael Nadal's conqueror Robin Soderling added another upset to his credit when he took out championship's 10th seed Nikolay Davydenko. The 6-1, 6-3, 6-1 win fetched Soderling his first ever Grand Slam semifinal spot.
"I didn't have a very easy draw," said Soderling. "I've played three good claycourt players and I've played three very good matches, so my confidence is getting better and better."
"It was maybe easier than I expected (against Davydenko). You expect a tougher match in the quarter-finals of a Grand Slam, but it wasn't as easy as the scoreline suggested.
"I always knew I could play really, really good tennis when I'm on top of my game. But what I'm happiest about is that I've played well for many matches in a row, which was maybe missing a few years ago."
Davydenko, who had missed most of the season with a nagging injury, later revealed - "He surprised me, he played really well, I tried to play better, to get some control from the baseline and play some long rallies with some top-spin, but he kept making winners. He just played faster."
In the women's quarterfinal matches, Dinara Safina opened the day with a come-from-behind 1-6, 6-4, 6-2 win over Miami champion Victoria Azarenka. The top seed looked in big trouble in the opening set, but regrouped herself to pull this quarterfinal thriller - Read match commentary.
"She played well in the first set. I wasn't doing anything. I played in her zone and hit down the middle and did all the running," Safina said.
"But then I fought hard and she missed too much. I always fight to the end, right until the match is over."
In the day's second quarterfinal, Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova humbled comeback star Maria Sharapova 6-0, 6-2 to reach the first Grand Slam semifinal of her career.
"It might be a surprising result for people who don't know me but I played solid from the baseline and didn't make too many errors," explained the Slovakian."I knew that if I could make her move around the court I would have a chance," Cibulkova added.
For Sharapova, a quarterfinal finish in a Grand Slam after a nine month injury lay-off wasn't a bad experience altogether.
"It took me a while to get going and create good opportunities to come to the net and finish the points," said Sharapova.
"But you can only ask your body to do so much. Everything fell short and the pace wasn't there. It all combined but she played really solid and I came up short."
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