Williamses guaranteed a winner in title match

Saturday, September 8, 2001

NEW YORK -- This much is certain, as their proud father noted, "A Williams is going to win" the U.S. Open today.

Venus and Serena Williams advanced to the final with stunning ease, beating the world's two top-ranked players and setting up the first Grand Slam final between sisters in 117 years.

Serena won first on Friday, clubbing one last service winner on match point and happily skipping to the net. Barely two hours later, Venus closed out her own semifinal victory and celebrated with her trademark wave and pirouette.

"All my life I've been waiting for this," said their mercurial father and coach, Richard Williams. "And now it can happen."

The pairing is no surprise -- Serena won the Open in 1999, and defending champion Venus has won three of the past five major titles. More remarkable was how they waltzed into the final by humbling the world's two top-ranked players.

Serena played almost flawless tennis in beating No. 1 Martina Hingis 6-3, 6-2. Venus then wore down No. 2 Jennifer Capriati 6-4, 6-2, ensuring the first Grand Slam final between sisters in 117 years.

Super Saturday will also include a rematch of the 2000 men's final, with a recently rejuvenated Pete Sampras trying to avenge his loss to Russian Marat Safin in the semifinals. Another Russian, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, will play Australian Lleyton Hewitt for the other final berth.

Then the sisters, also best friends, will take the stage for the first prime-time Grand Slam women's final.

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