in the third round for
the third straight year with today's 6-0, 6-4 loss to the 29th seeded Agnes Szavay of Hungary.
And despite Williams' dislike of the clay surface, the power hitter scored a claycourt title
in March at Acapulco where she'd defeated Szavay in the quarterfinals in three sets in their only prior meeting.
Williams had also pushed the world number one Dinara Safina to three sets in a quarterfinal meeting in Rome earlier this month which lasted for more than three hours.
But the American had struggled in her first two Paris matches, both going three sets. Williams was forced to save a matchpoint yesterday in the second round before advancing.
Today Szavay's strong performance loured Williams into longer rallies and into playing an error-prone and unsuccessful set one with many points decided by Williams' forehand errors or Szavay's outstanding backhand. Williams steadied her game in the second set to pull even with Szavay at 2-2 and 3-3 before breaking serve to reach 4-3.
However the 28 year old American, playing for the third day in a row and with a possible knee injury, would lose her serve to reach 4-4 and draw jeers from the Paris crowd with her below par play. Yesterday Williams' coach and father Richard Williams remarked that Williams was hindered by a knee injury.
The 20 year old Szavay held serve then broke Williams' serve to win the two remaining games of the match. Williams, who'd saved a matchpoint in the prior round with a backhand winner, today netted the same stroke on matchpoint.
The American, the fastest server of the WTA Tour, would connect with only one ace for the day while hitting ten winners overall to twenty-three unforced errors in the one hour twenty-one minutes long match.
Williams; however, does not yet make a complete French Open exit as she is scheduled later today to once again meet Szavay: in the second round of the women's doubles competition.