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U.S. Open: Serena Williams One More ‘Manhandle’ From Title

So dominant Serena Williams has been that her U.S. Open semifinal victim, Sara Errani, would like to see how men fare against her.

“Given that men are always quick to say women are a lot worse,” Errani said, “I’d love to see her play in a (lower-level) men’s tournament and see how they deal with her. It’s easy to talk. On the court, it would be different,”

Errani knows. Williams made mince meat out of her to get to Saturday night’s final. The 14-time Grand Slam winner had a cakewalk besting Errani 6-1, 6-2 in an overwhelming performance.

“I’ve practiced with a lot of guys ranked 400th or 500th,” Errani said. “I’ve never played with a man who hits as hard as she does.”

Williams blasted nine aces, giving her an eye-popping 50 for the tournament. Many times, Errani was left standing on the Arthur Ashe Stadiujm court befuddled.

How defeated was she?

“My objective,” Errani said, “was to prolong the match as much as possible.”

Wow. Williams smashed 38 winners to Erran’s six. It was a mismatch of the highest order. It lasted all of 64 minutes.

And so, Williams goes for her 15th Grand Slam championship against No. 1-seeded Victoria Azarenka, who eliminated Maria Sharapova in three sets.

Azarenka will have to be at her best to derail this figurative train called Serena Williams. To wit: Not only has William won every set she’s played, she’s dropped a total of only 19 games across six matches.

Williams is 9-1 against Azarenka. “Obviously, Victoria wants to win, too,” Williams told the crowd in Arthur Ashe Stadium. “But I’m American, guys. Last one standing. Go USA!”

It was 12 months ago that Williams was stunned in straight sets in the U.S. Open final by Sam Stosur of Australia. Facing a break point at the start of the second set, Williams pounded a forehand she celebrated with her familiar yell of “Come on!” But she screamed as Stosur was reaching to return the shot. The chair umpire awarded the point to Stosur, setting Williams off on a series of insults directed at the official, including, “You’re just unattractive inside.”

In the 2009 semifinals in New York, Williams launched into her infamous foot-fault tirade and was docked a point on match point, ending a loss to Kim Clijsters.

When a reporter mentioned to Williams, who won the U.S. Open in 1999, 2002 and 2008, that nothing of that sort has happened this year, she replied: “Hey, it’s not done yet.”

“Well, I did grunt once today, and I thought, ‘God, I hope I don’t lose the point,’ ” Williams said. “Like I said, my goal this year was not to get in any fights.”

She hasn’t. She has crafted a stretch of dominance that has carried her to a 25-1 record since a shocking first-round exit at the French Open in late May, the only time in 49 Grand Slam appearances that Williams lost her opening match.

Her recent surge includes titles at Wimbledon and the London Olympics.

“It’s really awesome,” Williams said in an on-court interview. “That is what I wanted, and what I dreamed of, all year.”

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