• Sony Ericsson Open

Venus rolls back years with battling win over Kvitova

ESPN staff
March 24, 2012
Venus Williams celebrates her win © PA Photos

Venus Williams gave a clear signal that she is not ready to cede to the young guns by toppling No. 3 seed Petra Kvitova in the second round of the Sony Ericsson Open.

Williams has been struggling for long-term fitness for the past couple of years, but is still a force when at her peak and after exchanging sets she blew away the Wimbledon champion in the third to win 6-4 4-6 6-0.

"I know she's playing well and I know that I have fallen off the ranks and she's risen up the ranks since I have been injured," said Williams. "So in many ways we've changed places. It's definitely satisfying."

Williams is receiving regular treatment, having been diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome at last year's US Open, and it would appear she is treating each game as a bonus.

"I think if there's anyone on this tour besides me and maybe [Alisa] Kleybanova, we have the least amount to lose," Williams said. "Every shot is a victory and a blessing. So it's like I'm just going for it."

The 31 year old, who won the title 11 years ago, will face Aleksandra Wozniak in the third round following her three-set win over Monica Niculescu.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.