Defending champion Venus Williams ensured the Wimbledon final would be another family affair with a devastating performance against Russia’s Dinara Safina in Thursday’s second semifinal.
Third seed Venus produced an awesome display on Centre Court, crushing world No.1 Safina 6-1 6-0 in just 51 minutes, after sister Serena had earlier won an epic three-set semifinal against Elena Dementieva. There was no way five-times champion Venus, was being sucked into such a dogfight. Her match was a much more subdued affair as she outclassed the top seed from the moment she settled into the match, winning the first nine points and breaking the Safina serve. Safina simply could not cope with the Williams serve, with one ace in the third game clocking in at 124mph, the fastest in the women’s tournament. Safina managed to get her side of the scoreboard ticking in the sixth game but it was no consolation as Venus stepped up the power on her groundstrokes.
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When Venus broke the Safina serve again at the start of the second set the match was essentially over. Unforced errors sprayed from Safina’s racket throughout the second set and a double fault in the fifth game handed Williams another break of serve. The end eventually came when Safina dumped another forehand into the net to allow Venus to take the match, after which she expressed her delight at another all-Williams, all-American final on July 4. Venus told the BBC: “This is my eighth final and it is a dream come true to have another opportunity to hold the plate up. “I was able to stay focused and I have so much experience on this court. But the hardest part has to come, to play Serena in the final.”