Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Serena in hot form

The last quarter final was potentially the best between second seed and six time champ Serena Williams, and ninth seed and last years semi finalist Johanna Konta.

Serena defeated Barbora Strycova in a closely fought fourth round match and Johanna thrashed Ekaterina Makarova, as she has most of her opponents this Aus Open.

The two had never played each other before.

Serena served first and the pair shared winners for the opening two points before Serena won the game with an ace to lead 1-0.  A love game from Konta and 1-1.

Break point after a double fault and great ground strokes from Konta.  Saved by Williams, and she held for 2-1.  However the forehand of Konta was in fine shape and Williams would need to be wary of it as the match progressed.

Serena showed her forehand to be just as potent and had Johanna down two break points.  An ace saved the first but a backhand into the net presented the first break to the American. 3-1 Williams.

The break was consolidated 4-1.
A backhand return winner off the Williams racquet wasn't enough to prevent the Konta hold and 4-2.  

A British backhand winner had an equivalent American response and the ace and forehand completed a slick game, putting the second seed within a game of the set. 5-2.

Konta continued attacking, and her tennis was generally of a high standard.  Just that one lapse in the fourth game had brought her undone.

A series of winners from Williams eventually pushed her to a set point and Konta relented with her final shot flying long.  6-2 and Williams raising the bar as the tournament reached its final stages, as she had for so many years.

Konta and Williams both held serve to begin set two but Williams who was cruising in the third game was surprisingly broken when she double faulted and threw in three errors.  More unforced Williams errors helped Konta consolidate at 3-1.

A pair of aces sealed the next Serena serve and she was close at 2-3, then two forehand blunders compounded by a double fault sent Konta to triple break point.  A Serena forehand confirmed the break and it was back to 3-3.  
A break point for Johanna was lost in the next game and once more Serena finished things with a pair of aces.

At 30-15  in the eighth game Konta was passed with a Williams forehand.  Then an unforced forehand mistake put her down a break point where Serena pounced with a winning backhand.  5-3 and serving for the match.

A love game secured a semi final berth for Serena Williams 6-2 6-3.

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