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By Rohit Sharma
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World No.2 and reigning Australian and US Open champion Kim Clijsters is just one win away from re-claiming the top spot in WTA rankings. Standing in her way is the Yugoslavia born Australian, Jelena Dokic who plays Clijsters for a semifinal spot at the 2011 Open GDF Suez, a WTA premier event being played here in Paris, France.
Clijsters is without a doubt, the hottest player on the WTA tour at the moment. With 2 of the three Grand Slams along with the WTA championships title in her kitty, Clijsters is in a league of her own. Clijsters only concern is her increasing number of unforced error count, the worst of which we saw last week when the Belgian lost a set to American Bethanie Mattek-Sands on home soil before recovering soon enough to wrap up the match.
Clijsters opponent is known for giving flahes of brilliance on tour. Ever since her rise to stardom in late nineties, Jelena Dokic has been plagued with inconsistency. Dokic made a good start to the year though and picked up a couple of good wins before beating last year's finalist Lucie Safarova in the first round here in Paris. She then beat Russian Nadia Petrova in two gruelling sets to set up this elusive clash.
"I think Clijsters is the toughest test you can have," Dokic said. "I feel she's No.1 at the moment anyway but I hope to play my best. I have nothing to lose."
Both players have met a total of nine times with Clijsters leading the way 6-3. Dokic, however clinched the pair's last meeting in 2003 when Clijsters was ranked No.1. Times have changed and despite Dokic's new found 'giant-killer' status, Clijsters should prevail in two closely contested sets.
TennisEarth.com's Pick - Kim Clijsters in straight sets.
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