Singles – Semifinals
 S Williams (USA) d  S Stosur (AUS) 61 61
 L Safarova (CZE) d  P Hercog (SLO) 60 60
Doubles – Semifinals
[WC] A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) / L Safarova (CZE) d  L Huber (USA) / L Raymond (USA) 64 76(9)
A Medina Garrigues (ESP) / Y Shvedova (KAZ) d N Grandin (RSA) / V Uhlirova (CZE) 61 63
ORDER OF PLAY – SUNDAY, APRIL 08, 2012
STADIUM start 1:00 pm
 L Safarova (CZE) vs  S Williams (USA)
[WC] A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) / L Safarova (CZE) vs A Medina Garrigues (ESP) / Y Shvedova (KAZ)
Sam Stosur is Wonder Woman. After completing more than half of last night’s match this morning against Voskoboeva, she went on to knock off Venus Williams in the quarterfinals only hours later. Tomorrow, Stosur will go for the Williams Exacta in attempting to knock off both Williams Sisters in successive singles matches. That will be known as the Real Final, with the 2 seed and the 5. The other semi, between the 14 and 9 seeds, will see Polona Hercog against Lucie Safarova. It was this close for Hercog to be picked as Tennis East Coast Dark Horse to Win it All, but Wickmayer was settled upon at market close. I swear.
It will be interesting to see what Safarova does tomorrow. Will she be tomorrow’s Wonder Woman, or will the conventional wisdom of “singles before doubles” rule the day?
ORDER OF PLAY – SATURDAY, APRIL 07, 2012 STADIUM start 11:00 am A Medina Garrigues (ESP) / Y Shvedova (KAZ) vs N Grandin (RSA) / V Uhlirova (CZE)
Not Before 1:00 PM  S Williams (USA) vs  S Stosur (AUS)  P Hercog (SLO) vs  L Safarova (CZE)  L Huber (USA) / L Raymond (USA) vs [WC] A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) / L Safarova (CZE) – After suitable rest
The grandmother of women’s tennis tournaments begins in just ten days time. The Family Circle Cup is not only the longest running tennis event with the same sponsor, it is also the first women’s professional tennis tournament to have offered $100,000 in prize money.
East Coast tennis fans have been fortunate to have such an event for forty years. So much has changed in that time (Virginia Slims, anyone?), but the Family Circle Cup is still the premier women’s event on the East Coast.
The Family Circle Cup’s stadium on Hilton Head Island was the very first tennis stadium that I ever saw, way back in 1989. Since 2001, the Cup has resided on Daniel Island in the City of Charleston.
The qualifying draw was expanded from 32 to 48 for 2012, with 12 women qualifying for the main draw.
That means a very exciting first weekend, with 24 saturday matches and 12 on Sunday. Also on Saturday, the main draw will be selected from the grounds of the tournament. It will be open to the public and held during a match day, which is unusual and very welcome news to fans.
Agnieszka Radwanska is expected to be the top seed. 2011 US Open champion Sam Stosur, Grand Slam Queens Serena and Venus Williams, and former world #2 Vera Zvonareva headline a very competitive main draw. Venus was the recipient of a wild card as was Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Three wild cards remain for the main draw.
On the qualifying side, Americans Sloane Stephens, Jill Craybas, Julia Cohen, Coco Vandeweghe, Jamie Hampton, Varvara Lepchenko and Alison Riske are expected to compete. Riske, who lives in Hilton Head, should be a crowd favorite. We can’t say she’ll be a bigger crowd favorite than 16 year-old Hayley Carter from South Carolina, who nabbed the first qualifying wild card. Five more qualifying wild cards are up for grabs.
You can check out the entire field in this handy police-style photo array compliments of the Family Circle Cup. Click on the Family Circle Cup logo at the top of this article to purchase tickets.
Last month in Atlanta, eight women competed for a Main Draw Wild Card for the Australian Open. It turns out that three of those competitors will be in the Big Kangaroo Dance after all. Jamie Hampton and Alison Riske both advanced in straight sets yesterday in final qualifying rounds at Melbourne Park.
Up next for Hampton will be Mandy Minella of Luxembourg. Riske will face Urszula Radwanska for starters. Madison Keys will open against Zie Jheng.
Other first-round American women’s matches include Christina McHale taking on Lucie Safarova, Irina Falconi against Alberta Brianti, Betthanie Mattek-Sands against Agnieszka Radwanska, Serena vs. Tamira Paszek, Sloane Stephens against Silvia Soler-Espinosa, Vavs Lepchenko starts against Daniela Hantuchova and Vania King will meet Kateryna Bondarenko.
Falconi and Hampton should definitely be in a position to advance, so Atlanta should have more than one reason to celebrate.