NEW YORK (AP) — This one didn’t come down to a foot fault, a referee’s call or anything else that could’ve made Serena Williams mad.
In fact, if Williams was upset about anything Saturday night, it might have been that she didn’t get much of a match.
In what was supposed to be her toughest test yet at the U.S. Open, Williams dominated top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki 6-2, 6-4 in the semifinals to move a win away from her 14th Grand Slam title.
Williams was back in the semifinals at Flushing for the first time since 2009 when, also on a Saturday night in Arthur Ashe Stadium, she got called for a foot fault against Kim Clijsters, then went on a tirade against the referee that cost her match point.
An ugly moment she’d love to forget — sort of the same way Wozniacki would like to forget almost everything that happened on a worst-case-scenario night for her in the world’s biggest tennis stadium.
Her loss left No. 9 Sam Stosur as the last player with a chance to stop Williams at a tournament in which she has lost a grand total of 29 games over six matches and hasn’t dropped a set. Stosur beat Angelique Kerber 6-3, 2-6, 6-2 to reach her second Grand Slam final. They’ll play Sunday, with Williams going for her fourth U.S. Open championship on the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.
“It meant a lot to me to come out here as an American and still be in the tournament,” Williams said. “I really wanted to play tomorrow. Such a special day for the United States, so I’m really excited.”
Williams finished with 34 winners, compared to five for Wozniacki, though the real picture was painted early in the second set when Williams led 20-0 in that category.
That’s typical of each players’ game — Williams is about power and Wozniacki is about persistence — but the difference was glaring and the contest turned into a mismatch.
Well, Wozniacki did make it competitive for a brief moment, taking advantage of two loose Williams shots and a double fault to pull within 5-4 in the second set.
But Williams answered with a forehand winner, then drove Wozniacki into the corner on two shots she couldn’t get back. Five points later, it was over, and Williams was jumping up and down to celebrate — a marked difference from the last time she was at this point.
Accentuating the aggressive-vs.-passive theme, Williams even came to the net a bunch in this one. She won 17 of 21 points up there. Wozniacki went 1 for 3.
“Usually, I only come to the net to shake hands, but today, I was like, ‘Let me try something different,’” Williams said. “I think the crowd really helped me. I could feel the energy.”
(Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.)