Published: Wed, August 14, 2019
Sport | By Wilson Duncan

Serena Dominates Osaka To Reach Toronto Semis

Serena Dominates Osaka To Reach Toronto Semis

Serena Williams has gained revenge over Naomi Osaka in the first meeting between the tennis stars since the infamous 2018 US Open final.

Osaka went into the match with a ideal record against her former idol, but was unable to preserve that record as the 37-year-old veteran came out on top 6-3, 6-4.

In a highly anticipated rematch of their 2018 US Open final, No.8 seed Serena Williams took down newly-minted WTA World No.1 Naomi Osaka to advance to the semifinals at the Rogers Cup.

But since then, Osaka split with with her coach Sascha Bajin and has been unable to refind the form that saw her storm her way to a world number one ranking, suffering early eliminations in multiple tournamentsincluding a first round exit at the 2019 Wimbledon Championships, before coming unstuck against Williams in straight sets 6-3, 6-4 this week, in Toronto.

Williams had slow starts in her previous two outings this week but came out much stronger for this one and delivered a serving masterclass that denied Osaka any break point opportunities. "We haven't played since NY, which was a really good match for her. It was a better match for me today".

There was a scary moment in the second set when the American ran into the net post while trying to chase down an Osaka drop shot but, despite nursing her right arm, Williams confirmed that no serious damage had been done.

The American made light of Osaka's comments in a amusing post-match interview. "And, you know, I'm just overall a little bit better".

"That was very kind of her to say mum".

"I knew her game a little bit more, so that's a little easier", Williams said after the match, according to the Times.

Osaka, who calls Williams her "tennis mom", is not hung up on the loss, and admits Williams put up an incredible fight. "So I was just was like "I gotta keep going".

"But, yeah, I'm not really mad at this".

Canadian teen Bianca Andreescu ousted Pliskova 6-0, 2-6, 6-4 after one hour and 49 minutes to doom the Czech's bid to regain the top spot for the first time since 2017.

"But I think there were chances where she hit shorter balls, but I wasn't expecting her to hit the shorter balls, so I didn't move up on time", she said.

The victor will proceed to the final of the Rogers Cup - the Canadian Open, a Masters event worth 1,000 ranking points - and face the victor of the other semifinal, Sofia Kenin or Bianca Andreescu.

The 19-year-old Andreescu, from nearby Mississauga, is returning from a right shoulder injury that sidelined her since the French Open in May.

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