The 23 times Grand Slam winners Serena Williams ended a 3 year barren run for a WTA titles by winning the ATP 250 series event at Auckland. This would have been the most fulfilling start that the great American is looking for the Australian Open 2020, where she hopes to match Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles.
Serena who lost just one set in the whole tournament kicked her campaign against Italian Camila Giorgi. The former World Number 1 looked ominous from the start and dispatched her Italian rival in straight sets with a dominant score line of 6-3 and 6-2. In the round of 16 Serena met fellow countrywoman Christina McHale. The 1st set went to McHale who had broken Serena midway. However the great American regrouped herself quickly taking the next 2 sets in quickly and along the way dropping just 5 games.
QF, SF & Final of Auckland Open WTA Singles
In the quarterfinal Serena met Germany’s Laura Siegemund who had defeated another American Coco Gauff in the previous round. However she had no answer to Serena’s aura. The 23 time slam winner produced an explosive game serving accurately and hitting precise and powerful shots. She thus would beat the German in straight sets 6-4, 6-3 and thus entered the tournament semis without breaking too much sweat along the way.
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In the semis Serena was up against World Number 25 and rising American star Amanda Anisimova. The 18 year old had defeated Eugenie Bouchard in the previous round and was now hoping to upset a bigger opponent. However Serena proved to be too strong for the young starlet. Anisimova was allowed just 2 games in the match as Serena wrapped up with the one sided score of 6-1, 6-1. A single match would now separate the WTA legend to end her 3 year title drought.
Another young fellow countrywoman Jessica Pegula was waiting in the final. Pegula had beaten Serena’s doubles partner Caroline Wozniacki in the previous round. She did show a lot of heart and fought as hard as she could, especially in the second set. However Serena was in the zone and was determined to take the title home. She won the match in straight sets and registered an emphatic victory just a week before the 1st Grand Slam of 2020, where she is among the favorites.
Serena also had to play the doubles final after her singles victory. She was partnered alongside her close friend Caroline Wozniacki. The two had not lost a set on the way to the final but were overpowered by the American pair of Asia Mohammad and Taylor Townsend to finish 2nd best in this category.