The hug at the net was the conclusion to an evening that would make a great — no, a grand — chapter in the book of Serena and Venus Williams’ careers: the two embracing, older sibling with words of praise for her kid sister: “I’m so happy for you.”
Venus, never happy to lose, could walk away with her head held high: On this night Serena was the better player, a 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 winner in a battle that was as much physical as it was mental and emotional. The victory delivers Serena into the semifinals of the U.S. Open, just two matches from a rarified calendar Grand Slam.
What Serena faces next is what many call the easy part: She has 43rd-ranked Roberta Vinci in the semifinals, a player she’s never lost to in four meetings.
Win and she’s into a fifth consecutive U.S. Open final. She’s 21-4 in major championship matches.