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Serena Williams upset by Victoria Azarenka at US Open, temporarily halting bid for 24th major record



Azarenka took a 1-6 6-3 6-3 win on Thursday night in New York for a first major win in 11 attempts against Williams.

Williams took a mid-game medical timeout for an Achilles tendon problem in the decision maker’s second game and ended up being broken until 2-0. Unlike her previous three rounds, this time there have been no comebacks for the 38-year-old.

Williams lost her last four Grand Slam finals while trying to equal Margaret Court’s all-time record of 24, but semi-final defeats in the majors are rare. It dropped to 33-6.

Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka: friends, mothers and tennis greats prepare for the battle of the US Open

Azarenka has reached her first Grand Slam final since losing the 2013 US Open final to Williams.

She will face Naomi Osaka, who beat Grand Slam semi-finalist Jennifer Brady 7-6 (1) 3-6 6-3 in another thrilling match. Osaka won the crown in 2018 by beating Williams in a controversial final.

It’s a rematch of the Western & Southern Open warmup final, which also took place on the US Open website as part of the tournament bubble during the coronavirus pandemic.

Osaka, however, retired with a hamstring injury to deliver the title to Azarenka.

Thursday’s games were played with the roof on at Arthur Ashe Stadium due to rain.


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