US Open 2018: Serena Williams road to finalhttps://indianexpress.com/article/sports/tennis/us-open-2018-serena-williams-road-to-final-5346412/

US Open 2018: Serena Williams road to final

Serena Williams has reached the US Open final for the ninth time where she will be facing Japan's Naomi Osaka.

Serena Williams has made it to the final of US Open for the ninth time. (Source: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports)

Serena Williams will be hoping for her first Grand Slam title since Australian Open 2017 as she plays Japan’s Naomi Osaka in the final of US Open 2018 on Saturday. Williams, who was pregnant when she won the last year’s Australian title, will also be hoping to equal the record of 24 Grand Slam titles held by Margaret Court.

The 36-year-old, who gave birth to daughter Alexis-Olympia last September, reached this year’s Wimbledon title clash while still working to strike a balance between the challenges of motherhood and professional tennis. She is bidding to join Court, Evonne Goolagong and Kim Clijsters as the only mothers who have won Grand Slam titles in the past.

Serena William’s Road to final:

First round:

Serena kicked off her run with a 6-4, 6-0 Round 1 win over Magda Linette. The 36-year-old was dominant with her serve, winning 73.9 percent of total service points without facing a break point. She also had five aces and zero double faults.

Second round:

In their first head-to-head on the court, Serena knocked off Carina Witthoeft in the second round 6-2, 6-2 to set up a clash with sister Venus in the third round.

Third Round:

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Serena Williams beat her big sister Venus 6-1, 6-2 in their 30th head-to-head match since they first competed against each other 20 years ago. Serena was unstoppable after winning the first point after ankle taping in the second game.

Fourth Round:

Serena hit 18 aces and beat Kaia Kanepi 6-0, 4-6, 6-3 to advance to the quarterfinals for the 15th time. She swept through the opening set in a record-breaking 18 minutes.

Quarter-finals:

Serena defeat eighth seed Karolina Pliskova 6-4 6-3 to march into the semifinals. It was the first time that she had beaten a top-10 opponent since giving birth.

Semi-finals:

Serena beat Anastasija Sevastova 6-3, 6-0 in 66 minutes despite being behind 0-2 at the beginning of the semifinal. She went on to win 12 of the final 13 games to reach the final of US Open for the ninth time.