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It will be a family affair

It will be a family affair
Image © Getty Images

The sisters have done it, Both aged in their mid-thirties, Venus and Serena Williams have reached the final of the Australian Open and in the process have set a series of new records and there is still one match to go!

It’s like more than a cherry on top, more than I dreamed of

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The pair have turned back the clock and will face each other for a major title for the ninth time in their careers after coming through their respective semi-finals with contrasting victories. The last time they met in the championship round was for the 2009 Wimbledon title which Serena won.

The 36-year-old Venus required two and a half hours to beat compatriot Coco Vandeweghe 6-7(3) 6-2 6-3 to become the oldest women’s finalist in professional tennis history. She was then followed by Serena, aged 35, who crushed CroatiaŠ—Ès Croatia’s Mirjana Lucic-Baroni 6-2 6-1.

The 13th seeded Venus was made to work by the unseeded Vandeweghe who has been inspirational in reaching the last four but her power and speed was matched by the veteran who won on her fourth match point.

"This means so much, especially because she played so well, I had to play defence for so long," Williams said having shown her delight at winning with a scream and pirouetting about the court.

"There was never a moment of relaxation ever, so to be able to get to the final through a match like this I’m just Š—– I’m excited about American tennis as well.

"It means so much, growing up all I wanted was to have an opportunity to play the tournaments. It’s like more than a cherry on top, more than I dreamed of."

Despite winning seven Grand Slams and being a seven-time runner-up, Williams has only ever made the final in Melbourne once before Š—– in 2003, when she lost in three sets to sister Serena.

As she awaited her sisters result she said: "More than anything I’d love to see Serena across the net from me on Saturday.Š—



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SErena Williams salutes her victory

2017 Australian Open - Day 11

Image © Getty Images

And her wish was granted later with Serena echoing big sis. "For us to both be in the final is the biggest dream come true for us," the holder of 22 grand slam titles said..

"I was really proud of Venus. She’s another total inspiration, my big sister.

"She’s basically my world and my life. She means everything to me and I was so happy for her obviously."

In grand slam matches Serena leads her elder sister Venus 6-2 and should the younger sibling win in Saturday, it would be her seventh title in Melbourne but more importantly, she would beat Steffi GrafŠ—Ès record of 22 majors won in the Open era. Margaret Court still leads with 24.

In addition, she could reclaim her world No1 ranking in her 29th grand slam final.

The question now is whether Venus will stand in the way of SerenaŠ—Ès record breaking opportunity.

"She’s my toughest opponent. No one’s ever beaten me as much as Venus has," Serena said. "I just feel like no matter what happens, we’ve won.

"She’s been through a lot. I’ve been through a lot. To see her do so well is great so I look forward to it.






About The Author

Henry Wancke

Henry Wancke is one of the most respected Tennis writers in the UK. Henry is the Editor of both Tennis Threads Magazine and tennisthreads.net. He previously worked as Editor of Tennis World, Serve & Volley as well as Tennis Today magazines and been stringer for The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and Press Association. He also co-authored the Ultimate Encyclopaedia of Tennis with John Parsons published by Carlton, and the Federation Cup – the first 32 years, published by the ITF. Currently he is the Secretary of the Lawn Tennis Writers’ Association and Hon Vice President of the Tennis Industry Association UK.

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