Serena demolishes Radwanska to make final in Australia

Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:04am EST
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By Greg Stutchbury

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Serena Williams' break from tennis at the end of last year to "just chill" appeared to have done her a world of good as the rejuvenated American bulldozed her way into the Australian Open final on Thursday.

The 34-year-old world number one totally demolished fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska in the first set before she emphatically sealed her place in a seventh Melbourne Park final with three aces in the final game in the 6-0 6-4 win.

Every time the American has made the final at Melbourne Park she has gone on to win the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup.

"I needed time off just to take a minute and just chill and re-heal, get ready," she said after the 64-minute battering of the Pole.

"I felt like I really committed myself ... it's just a great thing to be in the final after taking such a long time off."

Williams withdrew from the last four months of 2015 after she was bundled out of the U.S. Open in the semi-finals by Italy's Roberta Vinci, ending her hopes of emulating Steffi Graf's calendar grand slam in 1988.

The American, however, can join Graf on 22 grand slam titles, the most in the Open era, if she beats Angelique Kerber, who considers her fellow German Graf as her idol, in Saturday's final.

Despite not wanting to tempt fate, Williams added she did not want to repeat last year's memories of the U.S. Open, tacitly sending Kerber a message she better be ready for a similar onslaught that Radwanska faced.   Continued...

Serena Williams of the U.S. watches the ball as she hits a shot during her semi-final match against Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska at the Australian Open tennis tournament at Melbourne Park, Australia, January 28, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Reed