Iva Ivanovic believes her current level of performance could carry her all the way to the French Open title.
The 20-year-old, favourite for the crown following her elimination of top seed Maria Sharapova, comfortably dispatched Patty Schnyder 6-3 6-2 yesterday to claim her place in the last-four.
The Serbian came into the match on the back of a ’double-bagel’ 6-0 6-0 win over Petra Cetkovska in the last round – and her confidence told once again against the 10th-seeded Swiss, who was making her first quarter-final appearance at Roland Garros since 1998.
“I’m really happy with the way I’m playing at the moment,” said Ivanovic, the French Open runner-up 12 months ago.
“That’s something I want to keep focused on and keep working hard. In my days off I have time to prepare for the following matches, and that’s something that’s been great these past few weeks.
“So yeah, I just want to keep at this level.”
Ivanovic will play Jelana Jankovic in the semi-finals, after the number three seed brushed aside Carla Suarez Navarro.
The 23-year-old cruised to a 6-3 6-2 win in just 73 minutes to set up a clash with her fellow Serbian, against whom she has won just once in six meetings.
Looking ahead to her semi-final with Jankovic, Ivanovic admitted she could not put her finger on why she had enjoyed such dominance in their previous encounters.
She said: “It’s hard to say. Against some players you just do better than against others.
“She’s a tough opponent and she defends well. Every match is a new match, and I just have to keep playing like I played so far.”
She added: “It’s going to be an interesting match. At least we have one Serbian for sure in the final.”
Jankovic is hoping, though, that the clay at Roland Garros will yield a change of fortunes.
Only one of her five losses to her compatriot has come on clay – at Amelia Island last year – and she feels that the jury is still out as to whether Ivanovic has a significant advantage on the surface.
“I had troubles in the past against her – but I don’t think we played on clay many times,” said Jankovic.
“It’s a different game and it’s different circumstances, so I think it will be a completely different match. We’ll see how it goes this time.
“I really have to attack. She has some weaknesses in her game – and I really need to play well tactically to play the right shots, play the right game; then we will see.
“I will fight very hard, and hope I can do it – get in a grand slam final for the first time.”