Maria Sharapova (who will feature heavily in this year’s Birmingham Classic at the Edgbaston Priory Club in the build up to Wimbledon) will play Serena Williams in the must-see women’s final of the Australian Open 2015 Tennis Tournament.
World number one Williams downed her fellow American 7-6 (7-5), 6-2 to keep alive her hopes of a sixth Australian Open crown. Saving seven match points, Keys forced Williams to serve it out where she saved one more match point off Williams’ serve before the champion ended the match with an ace to advance to the final. The win ensured Williams retains the world number one ranking she has held for more than 100 weeks.
However Sharapova was the first to book a spot in the decider, thumping fellow Russian Ekaterina Makarova 6-3, 6-2 in 87 minutes. Sharapova had only dropped one set in six career meetings against Makarova, who came into the match in career-best form, having reached the semi-finals at each of the last two majors. “It’s so special,” said Sharapova after the match. “When you start off the tournament you take it a match at a time and it’s been kind of a strange road to get to the final, but I am here and really, really happy.”
The final has shaped up to be a fantastic spectacle with the with the two top-seeded women’s tennis players going head-to-head. Williams will start as a heavy favourite in the final, having won her past 15 matches against Sharapova over the past decade… but don’t dismiss her chances yet. Things are about to heat up in Melbourne.
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