The billing didnâ€™t live up to the build-up in Stanford on Friday night. Serena Williams demolished Maria Sharapova 6-1, 6-3 to advance to the semifinals of the Bank of the West Classic.
Williams currently the 169th ranked player in the world due to lack of play due to injury showed that sheâ€™s back in full flight since returning to the tour last month.
â€œIâ€™m a better player this month than I was last monthâ€¦..Iâ€™ve put in a lot of work and I hope it continues to pay off,â€ Williams said. â€œIâ€™ve just been trying my hardest and practicing and trying to get back in the Top 100.â€
Williams marched out to a 5-0 first set lead dominating on her serve while the Russian struggled with hers. Williams never had to look back.
â€œI had a good start, said Williams. â€œYou canâ€™t go in against the fifth-ranked player with your mind everywhere. You have to be serious. Itâ€™s a great win for the hardcourt season.â€
Sharapova on her sound defeat by Williams, â€œItâ€™s sport. You win some, you lose some. You move on. It certainly wasnâ€™t my day today. She was serving and returning quite powerfully, and I felt I was extremely late. I didnâ€™t have my timing today at all. Even when I had chances to change things around, I didnâ€™t do it.
â€œSerena has come back before. Sheâ€™s experienced enough to come back ready to play. She waited for the right time. When she comes back, sheâ€™s ready.â€
â€œWhen I had chances to change things around I couldnâ€™t do it. Her biggest strength is her power and you donâ€™t see so much of that in the top 10. It really makes her dangerous.â€
Williams lifts her record against Sharapova to 7-2. Sharapova last defeated Williams at the WTA Year-End Championships in 2004.
Williams will face Germanyâ€™s Sabine Lisicki in the semifinals on Saturday.