Whatever doubts persisted about Serena Williams’ fitness and taste for the fight in her quest for a seventh US Open title and record-tying 24th major championship were brushed aside in dramatic fashion on Friday night as she romped to a stunning 6-1, 6-2 victory over sister Venus before an electric crowd at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Serena equaled her most lopsided victory in 30 professional meetings with her most inconvenient rival, overcoming an early injury scare to roar into the second week of the season-ending grand slam at Flushing Meadows on a full head of steam.
“This was my best match since I returned,” she said. “I worked for it. I worked really hard these last three or four months. That’s life, you have to keep working hard no matter ups or downs you have. That’s what I’ve been doing.”
It was the earliest they’d met at a tournament since Venus won in the second round of the 1998 Australian Open in their first meeting as professionals, but neither sister had every beaten the other more decisively in their head-to-head series.
“I think it’s the best match she’s ever played against me,” Venus said. “I don’t think I did a lot wrong. But she just did everything right.”
More to follow.