Williams puts friendship to side against Wozniacki

Sat Oct 25, 2014 8:52am EDT
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By Julian Linden

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - There were no wild celebrations or fist pumps from Serena Williams after she beat Caroline Wozniacki at the WTA Finals on Saturday.

Instead, the world number one was overcome with remorse after beating her good friend in an epic match that could have gone either way.

Williams, perhaps the most ferocious competitor women's tennis has ever seen, won 2-6 6-3 7-6(6) but her relief at winning was tempered by her feelings for her Danish opponent.

"Yeah, it was the first match I didn't feel great since obviously -- if you take Venus out of the equation -- where I wasn't happy after I won," Williams said.

"I didn't give a massive fist pump. I almost felt I really warmed to cry because Caro is so nice, we get along and we do so much together. It was really kind of difficult."

After spending years playing the same tournament, Williams and Wozniacki have struck up a genuine friendship, even though the 33-year-old American is nine years older.

When Wozniacki broke up with her fiance, Northern Irish golfer Rory McIlroy earlier this year, it was Williams who helped cheer her up, inviting the Dane to her Florida home.

They dined out together in Singapore before the WTA Finals began and on Friday -- the night before they were due to play each other for a place in the final -- they went to a Mariah Carey concert together.   Continued...

Serena Williams of the U.S. hits a return to Simona Halep of Romania during their WTA Finals singles tennis match at the Singapore Indoor Stadium October 22, 2014. REUTERS/Edgar Su