En route to taking Madrid's clay, Williams lost only one set in six matches and defeated Maria Sharapova 6-1 and 6-4 in the finals. In an article by Dan Loumena of the Los Angeles Times, Williams was pleased with the victory:
“It feels good,” Williams said of reaching the milestone. “I don't know how many more I can win. Who knows if I will ever win another title?"
“When you first start out everything is so exciting," Williams said after capturing her first title on clay since 2002. "Now I expect to win.
Williams opened the tournament by winning seven consecutive sets and then lost the second set (0-6) to Anabel Medina in the quarterfinals. Fortunately for her sake, Williams answered back in the third set and proceeded to cruise through the semifinals and finals.
She has also been on a rather strong roll since the middle of the 2012 campaign.
After bowing out of the 2012 French Open in Round 1, Williams instantly responded by taking Wimbledon. She then won the gold medal in the Summer Olympics and took the U.S. Open.
Clearly, she entered 2013 with plenty of momentum. And although Williams was eliminated from the 2013 Australian Open in the quarterfinals, that finished as her best display since winning it in 2010.
Following suit, Williams reached the finals in Qatar but then pulled back-to-back wins in Miami and Charleston prior to Madrid. Currently ranked No. 1 in the WTA, Williams fans have every reason to believe she'll win in France.
Plus, she also made a clay surface comparison between Madrid and France, as stated in an article by Joseph Wilson of the Associated Press via Yahoo! Sports:
Williams said the move back to red clay worked well as tuneup for the French Open starting later in the month.
"This court is definitely different," she said. "It plays like Roland Garros and that is a plus. So I think it is great preparation."
This week's Italian Open is just another step of preparation as well, because Williams has not won on the Roland Garros clay since 2002.
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