BRISBANE, Australia -- This was one time
She extended her winning streak to 22 matches with the emphatic win over the reigning Australian Open champion, making it back-to-back victories over two of her main rivals. She beat four-time major winner
She improved to 14-3 against Azarenka, the last person to beat her last year. Before the semifinals, Williams said there was nothing like being “thrown into the deep end straight away.”
Having come through those challenges, she thought it was the ideal season-opening tournament.
“It was a great test. It showed me where my level was,” Williams said, looking ahead to the Australian Open. “I'm happy I was able to play both Maria and Victoria, because they brought their A games against me. I know now what I need to do for Melbourne — I look forward to it.”
The year's first major starts Jan. 13 at Melbourne Park and Williams, who won 78 of her 82 matches and collected 11 titles last year, is positioning herself as the favorite to claim a sixth Australian title after winning a tournament featuring six of the top 10 women.
The Williams sisters were hoping to both win a WTA Tour event in the same week for the first time in 15 years, but
Federer beat No. 8-seeded
The pair of 32-year-old former No. 1s have met 26 times dating back to Hewitt's win at Lyon in 1999. Federer leads their head-to-head record 18-8, including 16 wins in their last 17 matches, and has 17 Grand Slam titles to Hewitt's two.