Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia defeated Venus Williams, 6-4, 6-2, and top-seeded Kim Clijsters of Belgium downed Francesca Schiavone of Italy, 6-4, 6-4, on Friday to advance to the semifinals of the J&S Cup at Warsaw, Poland.
Kuznetsova next plays Anna Chakvetadze of Russia, who beat Ana Ivanovic of Serbia-Montenegro, 4-6, 6-4, 6-2. Clijsters will play Elena Dementieva of Russia, who dropped the first set against Polish teenager Agnieszka Radwanska before cruising to a 5-7, 6-3, 6-1 win.
The 13th-ranked Williams played only her fourth match since the Australian Open, sitting out nearly four months with a strained right elbow.
Williams, who overcame leg cramps to beat Martina Hingis in three sets on Thursday, said her legs weren't an issue against Kuznetsova.
"I felt fine to be honest," Williams said. "I felt like I could get to the balls, but also I think that on clay you have to have the mind-set of really working your feet and getting to the balls. Sometimes I felt like I was still playing a little bit hard court."
Former champions David Nalbandian, Nikolay Davydenko and Carlos Moya reached the semifinals of the Estoril Open at Oeiras, Portugal.
Top-seeded Nalbandian overpowered Portuguese wild-card entrant Frederico Gil, 6-1, 6-2.
Jarkko Nieminen, the highest-ranked player left in the BMW Open, outlasted Robin Vik, 7-5, 2-6, 6-2, to advance to the semifinals of the clay-court tournament at Munich, Germany.
Former Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova of Russia has entered the Acura Classic, July 31-Aug. 6, at La Costa Resort & Spa in Carlsbad, according to tournament organizers. Sharapova withdrew last year because of an injury.
Leinart Goes Through
First Workout at Arizona
Former USC quarterback Matt Leinart, the first-round draft choice of the Arizona Cardinals, participated in his first practice with the team.
"I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous, but I felt comfortable," Leinart said.
Five days after drafting Leinart with the 10th overall pick, the club announced that it had sold out its season-ticket allotment in its new retractable-roof stadium in Glendale, west of Phoenix. The team said it would reserve about 3,000 of the 65,000 seats for individual game sales.
Nate Clements re-signed with Buffalo, accepting the one-year, $7.2 million contract the Bills offered the cornerback after designating him the team's franchise player in February.
Running back Tony Hollings, who rushed for 149 yards in 49 carries and caught seven passes for 71 yards in three seasons with the Houston Texans, signed a two-year contract with the Chicago Bears.
Oklahoma State's Sutton
Pleads No Contest
Oklahoma State Coach Eddie Sutton pleaded no contest to drunken driving charges stemming from an accident in which his SUV swerved, collided with another vehicle and then hit a tree.
Sutton was charged with misdemeanor aggravated drunken driving, speeding and driving on the wrong side of the road after the Feb. 10 crash.
The rule allowing a player to call timeout while airborne or falling out of bounds might be eliminated for men's and women's college teams this season. The NCAA basketball rules committee agreed that a change needs to be made and a proposal will be sent to the playing rules oversight panel for final approval on May 30.
DeMarlo Slocum, director of operations for the USC men's basketball team, has been hired as an assistant coach at Idaho under George Pfeifer. Slocum, who spent one year with the Trojans, previously had been an assistant at Dixie State College and Georgia Southern.
Harvick Holds Off
Burton for Victory
Points leader Kevin Harvick, who earlier signed a three-year extension to remain at Richard Childress Racing, passed Paul Menard with 48 laps to go and held off a late challenge from Jeff Burton to win the rain-delayed Busch Series race at Richmond International Raceway.
Harvick, who started the Circuit City 250 with a 299-point lead over Clint Bowyer, won for the third time in his last four races to push his Busch Series victory total to 20.
Greg Biffle, second to champion Tony Stewart in last year's Nextel Cup championship chase, posted a lap at 127.395 mph, winning the pole for the Crown Royal 400 at Richmond International Raceway.
John Force celebrated his 57th birthday with a No. 1 qualifying effort for Funny Cars in the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals at Commerce, Ga.
Kings' Brown Leads
U.S. Past Norway, 3-1
Dustin Brown of the Kings scored three power-play goals to lead the United States to a 3-1 victory over Norway in the opening game of the World Ice Hockey Championships at Riga, Latvia.
In other games, Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins scored two goals for Canada in its 5-3 victory over Denmark, and defending champion Czech Republic managed only a 1-1 tie against host Latvia.
Is Scheduled for Aug. 12