Williams v Stosur in Toronto
Toronto - American Serena Williams easily beat Victoria Azarenka in straight sets on Saturday 6-3, 6-3 to set up a WTA hardcourt tournament final with Australia's Samantha Stosur.
Williams needed just 77 minutes to eliminate the fourth seeded Azarenka of Belarus while Stosur dispatched Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 5-7, 6-2 to reach Sunday's final.
The 29-year-old Williams is currently ranked 80th in the world and is competing in just her fourth tournament since being sidelined for a year by injuries and illness.
"My goals have been just to give it my all at every match and every tournament," Williams said.
"Not that it wasn't like that before, but I had a tremendous amount of focus in the grand slams, and I think I still will. But every now and then.. you never know, tomorrow is not promised and I want to give it my all."
She clinched the win by hammering a shot to the back corner that Azarenka could only watch. Williams broke Azarenka's serve on a double fault to take a 4-3 lead in the second set and never looked back.
"I feel it's better today than it has been the past couple of rounds, but I feel it's coming along, I feel I can still do a little better but overall I'm almost where I was," Williams said. "But I want to exceed that level."
It has been a long comeback for the thirteen time grand slam winner Williams, who isn't seeded in the Toronto event. The former world No 1 bristled when she was reminded of her current No 80 ranking.
"You think?" Williams said. "Maybe I'm like a changeling and maybe I am really top-10 and I am disguised."
Stosur, of Gold Coast, Queensland, broke Radwanska's serve three times in the opening set, but Radwanska rallied to take the second set when Stosur double-faulted.
The 10th seeded Australian broke Radwanska to go up 5-2 in the third, then clinched the victory with an ace.
The loss halted a nine-match winning streak for the 22-year-old Radwanska, who earned her fifth WTA title last week in southern California.
Even without a win, Stosur will be ranked in the top 10 in the world when the next set of rankings come out.
"It's always for any person playing a professional sport like tennis, that benchmark is the top 10, and then you make your top five, and from there, you never know what's possible," Stosur said.
"But I was definitely very excited when I broke the top 10 the first time."