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Saturday, January 29, 2022

New world number one Williams to face top-ranked Azarenka tonight



By Mai Akkad

New world number one Serena Williams will face defending champion Victoria Azarenka in the finals of the Qatar Total Open today.

Azarenka, who Williams will officially replace as No. 1 tomorrow, defeated world number four Agnieszka Radwanska yesterday in the semis.

When asked about her approach to the finals tonight, the Belarusian, has been on an eight-match losing-streak against Williams, said:

“Just consistency and really being focused on my game. You know, we all know that she has, you know, a great serve. She’s really aggressive, really consistent. So for me it is important to just be focused on myself and try to execute my game. That’s it.”

During yesterday’s match, 15-time Grand Slam champion Williams had no problem beating two-time Doha champion Maria Sharapova in straight sets.

The American, who regained her number one ranking after beating Petra Kvitova in the quarterfinals on Friday, said that despite her history with Azarenka, she is still gearing up her game:

“I feel like every time you have to go in with a new spirit and a new ‑‑ you know, it’s a new day. The slate is wiped clean to me,” she said.

The sold-out match will start after 6pm, following the doubles finals, which starts at 3:30pm.

Who’s going?

Credit: Photo by Mohamed Elzwawy

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