ROME – A day after insisting she was still the best player in the world despite falling from No. 1 in the rankings, Serena Williams lost to Patty Schnyder in her first match at the Italian Open.
Williams appeared to be moving with difficulty at times during her 6-2, 2-6, 6-1 loss on the clay at the Foro Italico.
“We all know who the real No. 1 is,” Williams said Monday. “Quite frankly, I’m the best in the world.”
Earlier, Dinara Safina, the player who overtook the top spot from Williams, bumped off Virginie Razzano 7-6 (1), 6-1.
Defending champion Jelena Jankovic and French Open champion Ana Ivanovic all advanced to the third round, as play was disrupted by rain and went late into the night.
Armstrong to help out
ROME – Lance Armstrong will ride in support of teammate Levi Leipheimer in the Giro d’Italia, saying he is not ready to contend for the title.
The seven-time Tour de France winner broke his collarbone in a crash in March and hopes to win at least one stage of the Giro, which begins Saturday in Venice.
“While at the beginning of the year my objective was to contend, with the crash I’m not sure I still can,” Armstrong said Tuesday at a meeting with Italy’s foreign minister, Franco Frattini, to support his campaign against cancer.
“Before that I was ahead of schedule. Now we’re behind schedule. I have to go into the Giro knowing I’m not a contender for the overall.”