Tennis: Rain stops action at US Open

Roberta Vinci reached the U.S. Open quarterfinals for the second straight year, beating fellow Italian Camila Giorgi and the rain today.

The 10th-seeded Vinci won 6-4, 6-2 in 67 minutes. Moments later, it started pouring, stopping all matches at Flushing Meadows.

Vinci had never made a Grand Slam quarterfinal before this tournament a year ago, when she was 29. Now Vinci has done it in consecutive U.S. Open trips. She lost to another countrywoman, doubles partner Sara Errani, in the quarters in 2012.

"It's obvious that I'm not young. I'm 30. But it can be a strength, because I have a lot of experience,'' Vinci said. "Against a player like Camila, who is very young, it can be an advantage for me and I think it was on the court today.''

Giorgi, a 136th-ranked qualifier, was trying to reach her first major quarterfinal at age 21. In her third-round upset of sixth-seeded Caroline Wozniacki, she crushed the ball on point after point, with 46 winners and 45 unforced errors.

She jumped to a 4-1 lead in the first set Monday, but Vinci stayed poised and patient. Vinci, who had never faced the younger Italian before, started attacking her forehand, and Giorgi's mistakes mounted. She finished with 35 unforced errors to 20 winners.

"The problem wasn't the opponent,'' Giorgi said. "The problem is that I wasn't myself on court today.''

Vinci is one of only two players seeded in the top 10 left in her half of the draw, along with No. 2 Victoria Azarenka.

About two hours after play was halted, the courts had been dried but the players weren't warming up. Sure enough, rain started to fall again. The forecast for the rest of the day didn't look much better, threatening to postpone matches involving Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Azarenka.

Arthur Ashe Stadium is finally getting a roof, the U.S. Tennis Association announced last month. But that won't happen until 2016 at the earliest. For now, rain delays are the reality at Flushing Meadows.

If Nadal and Federer win their fourth-round matches whenever they're actually played they'd meet in a quarterfinal of 29 combined Grand Slam titles. The great rivals have met 10 times at major tournaments, but never before the semis.

The potential matchup in the quarters is a byproduct of Federer falling to a seeding of No. 7. His fourth-round opponent is 19th-seeded Tommy Robredo.

The second-seeded Nadal is scheduled to take the court after Federer, facing No. 22-seeded Philipp Kohlschreiber.

- AP

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