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SERENA SURVIVES, VENUS WITHDRAWS

The rush of interviews was over. The morning-to-night television appearances had wrapped up, and the fashion shoots were finished. There would be no more time for parties, sound bites and whirlwind holidays.

It was time to get back to work for Maria Sharapova.

Sharapova returned to the circuit Tuesday and played as though she had not taken a break. Sharapova, in her first match since her Wimbledon victory, defeated Lilia Osterloh, 6-3, 6-3, in a second-round match at the Acura Classic.

"I think I did well in my first match considering I did not play for three weeks, and I was coming off such a big win," said No. 6 seed Sharapova, who needed just 78 minutes to brush aside any rustiness and Osterloh.

Osterloh, ranked No.186, did little to derail Sharapova, who seemed intent on showing the capacity crowd of 6,500 at La Costa Resort and Spa she is serious about her tennis.

"It was a fun experience. I enjoyed every minute of it," Sharapova said of her time off. "When you win something big, achieved something big, even though I was so tired, I really enjoyed it."

At 17, Sharapova owns four titles, has earned more than $1.4 million in prize money and is ranked No.8 in the world. And she wants more. She hopes to show that her Wimbledon title is not a fluke, and that she's not just a one-Slam wonder.

"Of course now, I have to forget about it (Wimbledon) and move on and go back and train and achieve many more things," she said.

Top-seeded Serena Williams nearly joined her sister on the sideline but managed to overcome a painful blister on her right foot and win her first match.

Williams defeated Jelena Jankovic, 6-7 (3), 6-3, 6-2, in a 2-hour, 18-minute marathon that featured long rallies, a ton of errors, big serves and 10-minute medical timeouts for both players.

Venus Williams withdrew from her match against Gisela Dulko with a sprained wrist.

Jankovic pushed Williams early, taking advantage of her opponent's errors to split sets.

"Everyone tends to play their toughest and beyond against me," Williams said.

Play deteriorated in the third set as both players began suffering twinges. Williams closed out the match with two aces.

"I didn't play that well," Williams said. "I made a lot of mistakes."

Rain 1, Toronto 0

TORONTO -- They played 35 minutes of tennis in the $2.5 Masters Canada tournament and rain was the winner.

After rain forced a nine-hour delay to the start of play, it subsided long enough for world No. 1 Roger Federer to take on Hicham Arazi. After top-seeded Federer breezed through the opening set, 6-3, rain began falling and action was suspended for good.

The Federer-Arazi match was to resume today.

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