The pre-match analysis here said, “Sharapova won two of their first three meetings, all in 2004. Since then Williams has won 12 straight with Sharapova winning 3 sets in those 12 matches. Both players have excellent, aggressive return games and strong first serves, but Serena has a more consistent 2nd serve and has been steadier from the baseline. Sharapova is playing extreme tennis – she’s on the edge at all times – going for winners and risking errors. Serena is the more consistent of the two – going for winners when she’s in position to do so, keeping the ball in play and deep when she isn’t in a winning position. Sharapova knows that she can’t beat Williams playing her same go for broke style – she’ll need to use a bit more spin and angle to open up the court and keep Serena off balance, and then go for the winning shot when she has the opening.”
“It will be a tough task for Sharapova to defend her title here – Serena looks unbeatable and she has been for Sharapova for the last nine years.”
So what happened?
Williams was too solid, too consistent and too powerful for Sharapova. After a shaky start to the match, Williams settled down and picked up her game. In the first set she lost serve twice and made 12 unforced errors with just 9 winners. Her return game bailed her out with 3 breaks of Sharapova’s serve. In the 2nd set Serena lost just 3 points on her serve, hit 20 winners and just 9 unforced errors. She finished the match with 29 total winners (10 were aces) to just 10 total winners for Sharapova. Serena controlled all parts of the court, winning 10 of 12 net approaches as well as dominating from the baseline.
In the end Serena was too good.
Williams def. Sharapova 6-4, 6-4 in 1 hour 46 minutes