Venus beats Wozniacki in Dubai semis as all-Williams final looms
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP)
Venus Williams dominated eighth-seeded Caroline Wozniacki 6-3, 6-2 to reach the final of the Dubai Championships on Friday.
''I feel like I've just gotten so much better since my first round to now, just feeling comfortable on the court, feeling comfortable when I'm behind, feeling comfortable when I'm in the lead,'' Williams said. ''So it reminds me a lot when I first came on tour, having to learn a lot, so I feel like I'm learning lessons all over again.''
Williams, who lost the Auckland final to Ana Ivanovic last month, lost an early 2-0 lead in the first set, but from 2-2 always led in the 81-minute match.
The 44th-ranked Williams, the Dubai champion in 2009 and 2010, failed to serve out the first set at 5-2, surrendering that eighth game at love.
Williams broke back immediately, converting a second set point.
She broke the Dane's serve at 15-40 with a textbook backhand volley for 2-0 in the second set. Another break in the eighth game improved her record against Wozniacki to 5-0.
''I didn't really feel like I could go out and play what I wanted to play,'' said Wozniacki, who won the Dubai trophy in 2011. ''Once I got going, she started to play better as well.
''It was kind of uphill today, and she was serving good first serves, especially when she needed them.''
Top-ranked Serena Williams faced 26th-ranked Alize Cornet of France in the other semifinal.
''I have earned every win this week, and in the finals I have to earn that one no matter who I play,'' Venus Williams said. ''It's not like I'm going to step out there and think that I've got the momentum or anything.
''I've got to create what's going to happen on the court. That's what I'm going to look to do.''
If Serena wins, the Williams sisters will face each other in a first final since the 2009 WTA Championships. Serena holds a 14-10 winning record over Venus, including 8-3 in finals.
''It will be wonderful for us to walk on the court in the finals again like we did, you know, the first time so many years ago,'' Venus said.