Stunning Serena sweeps past Sevastova into 9th US Open final

Williams spent the next hour playing flawlessly, particularly at the net, and grabbed 12 of the last 13 games to beat No 19 seed Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia 6-3, 6-0 and reach her ninth final at Flushing Meadows and 36th at all Grand Slam tournaments.

And he has now matched his best Grand Slam performance since reaching the final four of the 2016 US Open with an impressive victory over Cilic. She then stunned defending champion Sloane Stephens 6-2 6-3 in the last eight.

Marin Cilic will face Kei Nishikori three years after the 2014 final won here by the Croatian player in straight sets.

Williams stayed on the charge and Sevastova's morale sagged as she was broken twice in the second set, her elegant backhand letting her down and it was one-way traffic from there onwards with Williams winning twelve of the last thirteen games. "I'm only a few months in and really looking forward to the rest of the year and next year", Williams said.

In addition, she actually boasts better return data at this year's US Open than Williams does, against at least similar opponent quality, if not a higher calibre.

Keys and Suarez Navarro met three times previously, with Keys winning all three matches in three sets.

Williams raced to a 6-4 6-0 victory over Magda Linette before crushing Germany's Carina Witthoeft 6-2 6-2 in the second round.

"It really means a lot to get to the semis", said Osaka whose post-match, on-court interview endeared her further to a growing legion of fans.

Meanwhile, two-time US Open champion Djokovic will be playing in his 11th consecutive semi-final in NY, just two months after defying the odds to lift a 13th major at Wimbledon.

"I think we play similarly", Keys said of facing Osaka.

"I hate matches like this", said Tsurenko.

Djokovic moved a step closer to a third championship at Flushing Meadows and 14th Grand Slam title overall by eliminating Millman 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 in the quarterfinals. "I still haven't totally processed this match". It was odd enough to see a player be allowed to do that during, instead of after, a set, but even odder for it to happen after an even number of games, rather than at an odd-game changeover.

That victory became undeniable as Williams rushed through the second set in 27 minutes, bagelling her dazzled foe, who at times was almost knocked off balance by the power in the champion's shot. Cilic started well, taking the opening set and going up a break in the second.

  • Steve Townsend