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Ruthless Serena wallops Errani

By Agence France-Presse in Paris | China Daily | Updated: 2013-06-08 05:43


Ruthless Serena wallops Errani

Serena Williams celebrates defeating Sara Errani in their women's singles semifinal match at the French Open at Roland Garros in Paris on Thursday. Williams will face defending champion Maria Sharapova in the final. Stephane Mahe / Reuters

The world No 1 thrashes last year's runner-up Errani in just 46 minutes

Serena Williams blitzed hapless Sara Errani 6-0, 6-1 in just 46 minutes on Thursday to reach her second French Open final, where she'll face defending champion Maria Sharapova for the title.

The American top seed, who won her only Roland Garros crown on her last final appearance in 2002, will be playing in her 20th career Grand Slam championship showdown after stretching her current winning streak to 30 matches.

Williams, at 1.75m and 70kg, was just too powerful for Errani, the runner-up in 2012, but whose slight stature of 1.64m and 60kg, was never going to intimidate the American.

It was the most one-sided semi-final since Chris Evert'ts 6-0, 6-0 mauling of Camille Benjamin in 1984, which is the worst hammering ever handed out in a Roland Garros semifinal.

Williams blasted 40 winners to Errani's two while the Italian won just five points on the American's serve.

"I told myself: 'Serena, just concentrate' and that's what I did," said Williams, who had been pushed to three sets and almost two hours by quarterfinal opponent Svetlana Kuznetsova.

"Against Maria, I will have to prepare slightly differently. She's a great player. But it's magnificent to be back in the final after 11 years."

The 31-year-old will start Saturday's final as the comfortable favorite as she holds a 13-2 career lead over Sharapova, with the Russian's last triumph coming nine years ago.

"To come back as the defending champion, it's extremely special to get back on that stage where it comes down to the last two players of the tournament," Sharapova said.

The world No 1 raced through the first set on Thursday in just 21 minutes, firing 18 winners past the Italian fifth seed and allowing her opponent a meager two points on serve.

It wasn't all raw power, however, with the top seed winning one point in the sixth game of the opening set with a sweet, backhand volley hit from almost behind her.

With Errani, who had lost all of her five previous meetings with the 15-time Grand Slam title winner, was playing with a bandaged right thigh and her hopes continued to sink.

"I'm very happy to be back in the French Open final 11 years later," Williams told the crowd in French. "I'm still here 11 years later. It's so wonderful for me."

The 26-year-old from Bologna was quickly 3-0 down in the second set, before she finally got on the scoreboard in the fourth game.

It was only a brief pause in the onslaught as Williams sent down another love game for 4-1 and then broke for the fifth time to stretch out to 5-1.

Errani was put out of her misery in the seventh game, when Williams clinched victory on her fifth ace of the tie.

"I enjoyed it," insisted Errani despite the humiliation.

"It was a great court, great weather. What she did today was unbelievable. She is so strong and is an unbelievable player."

Errani, who has now lost all six matches she has played against the American, won just five points on the Williams serve and hit only two lonely winners.

"It was a great day. I tried but that's sport. Sometimes you lose, but you have to stay in there and try until the last point. I gave it my all, but there was nothing I could do."

The pint-sized Italian had no response to Williams.

Not that Errani, the world's top doubles player, has given up hope of ever defeating the world number one.

"If she has a bad day, I can beat her," she said.


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