• WTA

Super Serena outclasses Venus to reach final

ESPN staff
April 6, 2013 « McIlroy wants Wozniacki on his bag | Chartbeat test »
Serena Williams produced a fine display to defeat sister Venus Williams © AP
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World No. 1 Serena Williams produced a super performance to defeat sister Venus Williams 6-1 6-2 and advance to the Family Circle cup final.

In their first meeting since the WTA Tour Championships in 2009, it took less than an hour on the Billie Jean King court for 31-year-old Serena to clinch victory.

Serena held the first service game before a Venus double fault gave the world No. 1 an early break. Venus - one year older than Serena - continued to struggle in the opening set; six unforced errors left her trailing 3-0 and Serena soon concluded a double break with a superb backhand lob.

Venus broke back immediately, but poor service combined with a forceful forehand return from her younger sister helped retain the advantage. Serena served to love to take the first set 6-1 in under 30 minutes.

A fifth double fault from Venus allowed Serena an early break in the opening game of the second set, before holding service to extend the lead to 2-0.

Despite the world No. 24 holding her next two service games, Venus could not break down Serena as the No. 1 seed landed a number of strong backhands to move into a 4-2 lead. The difference proved to be in the serve as Serena won 68% of her service points, while Venus wavered on 42% and conceded eight double faults overall.

Another break of the Venus serve meant Serena had to hold for the match, which the WTA rankings leader did in devastating fashion to seal a spot in the final.

"When I'm out there, I'm really just focused on the ball," Serena said when asked about playing Venus. "I don't really focus on anything else, and I just try to go out there and do the best that I can.

"Venus has had a great week, and honestly, if she hadn't had to play so many matches, it would have been a much tougher match. She'll never admit it, but I don't think she was 100%. But you will never get that out of her. And quite frankly, three matches for her is much tougher than three matches for me. It's definitely not easy - because I'm struggling, and I can't imagine what she must be feeling.

"I think that's positive for her though - her next tournament can be more positive for that."

The American has won 70 out of her last 74 matches and expressed her admiration for the clay court in Charleston.

"I love playing on this court," Serena said. "I love this tournament. I think it's a good clay court. Like sometimes you play on certain clay courts and they're not good, and they're funny, and you can't really slide, or it's just weird. But this one is a really good one, particularly the last two years."

Serena will play Jelena Jankovic after the ninth seed overcame Stefanie Voegele 6-4 6-7(6) 6-2 in the second semi-final.

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