Serena Williams has another shot at winning a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam singles title after demolishing Elina Svitolina to reach the US Open final. She will have to put 2018 finals behind her though.
The American, 37, overpowered the Ukrainian fifth seed to win 6-3 6-1. Williams, seeded eighth, is aiming for her first Grand Slam win since giving birth in September 2017.
The six-time champion will face Canadian 19-year-old Bianca Andreescu in Saturday’s final in New York.
In a gripping encounter, Andreescu defeated 22-year-old Swiss Belinda Bencic 7-6 (7-3) 7-5, winning the last five games of the match.
Andreescu, who is playing in the US Open main draw for the first time and competing in only her fourth Grand Slam, was born nine months after Williams won her first title at Flushing Meadows in 1999.
Williams is already considered by many as the greatest female player ever, yet will not be satisfied herself until she has levelled – and then overtaken – Australian Margaret Court’s total of Grand Slam singles titles.
Following the difficult birth of daughter Olympia two years ago which almost cost Williams her life, she has reached consecutive Wimbledon finals – plus last year’s controversial US Open showpiece against Naomi Osaka – without capping what has already been a remarkable comeback with another major win.
For Williams to not go on and win a seventh US Open title – an Open era record in the women’s singles – would be a major shock on the evidence of her performances over the past two weeks.
Serena Williams will have to contend with a very resilient young Canadian Andreescu and Bencic. The Canadian becomes the first teenager to play in a US Open last-four match since 2009.
“I think it’s just all the hard work I’ve put in through the years,” she said. “If someone told me a year ago I would be in the US Open final this year, I’d tell them they were crazy.
“It’s just surreal. I really don’t know what to say. It’s a dream come true playing against Serena in the final of the US Open. It’s crazy.”
Serena Williams will have to deploy great charisma and patience to fend off Bencic who is very energetic and also patient. The strong back hand from the 37 year old Serena and her experience could go along way.
For the young Canadian, it will be about closing off emotions of playing against her role model and trying to put in the shift and win her first major something that the likes of Osaka will be telling for many years to come.
Author: Moses Echodu
Moses is a freelance writer for Newslibre and Programs Manager at the Craft Silicon Foundation. He loves writing about sports, politics and news around the globe and Inspiring new young people!!