Serena Williams in finals of Australian Open 2016
Reigning champion Serena Williams is the first finalist in the Australian Open after a straight sets – 6-0, 6-4 victory over Polish 4th seed Agnieszka Radwanska in Melbourne.
Williams displayed raw power in the first set, demolishing Radwanska in a mere 20 minutes – a lead she took despite not hitting a single ace in the set. She absolutely annihilated her Polish opponent in that set, with a mammoth 18 winners to Radwanska’s solitary winner. She also won 80% of her first serves, with Radwanska left struggling to reach the American’s shots.
Radwanska stole a march in the second set, and managed successfully to break Williams in the second set, and leading her 4-3 at one point, looked as though she could give Williams somewhat of a challenge, even possibly take it to a deciding set.
Williams also appeared to see a lull in her game, committing 13 unforced errors in the second set – but with 24 winners, and Radwanska managing 3, Williams dominated the court, and with brilliant cross-court coverage took some impossible-seeming shots to combat any challenge Radwanska sent her way.
She has reached the finals of the singles at the Australian Open on 6 occasions in the past, and won every single time. With 21 Grand Slam wins, Williams is only one victory away from equalling the 22-Slam record of Steffi Graf, who like the American is considered one of the greatest to have ever played the game.
The statistics echoed Williams’ athleticism on-court; Radwanska did not hit a single ace during the match, with all of Williams’ eight coming in the second set. Williams managed a mammoth 42 winners, and had immense success breaking her hapless opponent.
She will now face the winner of the other semi-final, between German 7th seed Angelique Kerber and unseeded British ace Johanna Konta, the latter of whom she has never played before. She’s played the German 6 times in the past, beating her 5 of those times, however, and looks on course to take her 7th Australian Open title in the women’s singles.