Serena Williams’ long quest for a 24th Grand Slam title will have to wait. Because once again, the best player in women’s tennis stood in her way.
Naomi Osaka, who hasn’t lost an official match since last February, put together a dominating performance in the Australian Open semifinals, beating Williams 6-3, 6-4 and ending hopes that the 39-year old American would tie Margaret Court’s all-time Slam record at this tournament.
The Japanese third seed swept past the American veteran 6-3, 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena in front of thousands of fans allowed back in after Melbourne lifted a snap five-day lockdown.
She will face either American Jennifer Brady or Czech Karolina Muchova on Saturday for another Slam title after her success at Flushing Meadows in 2018 and last year, and Melbourne in 2019.