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Friday, September 4, 2015, Bhadra 20, 1422 BS, Zilqad 19, 1436 Hijr


Serena threats Venus and Bencic must duel next
Published :Friday, 4 September, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 15
New York, Sept 3: Top-ranked Serena Williams is five wins shy of the first calendar Grand Slam since 1988, and two of her top threats must face each other next at the US Open.
Swiss 18-year-old Belinda Bencic, who beat Williams last month in a Toronto semi-final on her way to the title, and 35-year-old Venus Williams, Serena's seven-time Slam champion elder sister, meet Friday in a third-round match on the Flushing Meadows hardcourts.
Serena Williams seeks her 22nd Open Era Slam singles title to match Steffi Graf's record and a seventh career US Open crown to match another Open Era mark.
So many top rivals have fallen that this will be Serena's first Slam final without facing a top-10 rival if she gets that far.
But she might have to face Bencic or Venus in a quarter-final, 12th seed Bencic being the highest-rated rival in Serena's half of the draw as well as the one who beat her most recently while Venus brings a sibling factor that has disrupted both players in past meetings.
Venus Williams is 3-0 all-time against Bencic without dropping a set, including winning Bencic's WTA debut in 2012 at Luxembourg at age 15.
Bencic was crying in frustration at times in a second-round win Wednesday over Japan's Misaki Doi in which she saved three match points.
Bencic tweeted a "see no evil" emoticon in a message after the match: "Im through!!! apologizing for my attitude today, i know it was horrible but we all have bad days, right? #superfrustrated."
Venus Williams hopes to learn from the lessons Serena received in defeat, thanks to some sisterly advice.
"We always give each other advice, especially if one of us has played the other opponent recently," Venus Williams said.
"She'll probably give me some pointers. She's got pretty sage advice. I like to think she knows best."
That includes when it comes to dealing with the calendar Slam pressure this week in New York. Serena struggled in advancing Wednesday, serving poorly and citing nerves in her win over Kiki Bertens.
"She's handling it like another tournament that she feels like is within her reach. She feels confident. She knows she has the game," Venus Williams said.
"Nerves are normal. You can't be cured from them unless you're a machine. It's just about how you deal with it and how you conquer that moment." AFP










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