Serena Williams tasted defeat in her US Open semi-final clash with Victoria Azarenka after suffering an injury early in the third set of a dramatic clash.
Williams – who was hoping to equal Margaret Court’s all-time Grand Slam record in New York – had hammered Azarenka in the opening set but was forced into a decider by the fellow former world No. 1. With the match finely poised, Williams felt a sudden pain in her ankle and had extra strapping applied.
She was broken moments later and it proved to be a critical blow as Azarenka stormed on to win 1-6 6-3 6-2 in just short of two hours and set up a final clash with Naomi Osaka. The injury left a slightly bitter taste in the mouth after a night of world-class tennis on Arthur Ashe, with the ladies setting the bar extremely high ahead of the men’s semi-finals on Friday.
Azarenka and Williams were both striking the ball ferociously – just as Naomi Osaka and Jennifer Brady had before them – and still maintained a remarkably high level even after the injury suffered by the 23-time major winner. (Metro)