Serena Williams def Madison Keyes 7-6, 6-2
The scoreline might suggest a Serena tenis lesson to her young upstart and compatriot with perhaps a blip in the first set. But no.
It was Keyes who started the brightest true – with an opening game break of serve, and from there Serena was forced to go on the defensive against a barrage of winners and aggressive tennis from the 19 year old. Whilst Williams was able to hang in there, her opponent was letting in far too many unforced errors to capitalise on her gains.
Even as the world number one tightened her grip in the second, Keyes still stayed defiant, saving eight match points before the expected result finally came. But this was more than just a ‘solid test’ for the five time champ. Her huge celebratory roar was proof of that.
Maria Sharapova def Ekaterina Makarova 6-3, 6-2
In a contrasting SF, Makarova would fail to find her game and – more predictably her nerve. The 10th seed was tight and distracted through much of the first set and by the time that was over, Screamapova was in control.
Maria’s game was hardly firing on all cylinders throughout either, and she will need more than that screech and her insatiable desire to prevail on Saturday.