Serena Williams has wiped Maria Sharapova off the court in a stunning first-round statement at the US Open.
Serena blitzed her long-time rival 6-1, 6-1 in just 59 minutes, handing Sharapova her first opening round loss at Flushing Meadows in 13 appearances.
It was their first match-up at the New York grand slam.
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While Williams is seeded No. 8 and was a finalist last year in Flushing Meadows, Sharapova is far off the form that carried her to No. 1.
With the win, Williams improves to 20-2 all time against Sharapova and 8-1 in grand slam play, with Sharapova’s only grand slam victory in the rivalry coming in the 2004 Wimbledon final.
The loss means Sharapova will drop out of the world’s top 100.
Serena continues Sharapova dominance
The 32-year-old has failed to find the form that saw her win five grand slams since her return, and was ranked 87th in the world heading into the US Open, leading to a random pairing with Williams.
Sharapova was active early, finding answers for some of Williams’ blistering serves, while holding serve on her first chance. But Williams quickly asserted her dominance, breaking Sharapova on her second chance to take a 3-1 lead.
Sharapova would not win another game in the opening set as Williams’ serve proved too dominant, leading to quick points and game winners.
Williams broke Sharapova in the opening game of the second set to affirm that the opening set was no fluke.
Sharapova held serve to win the third game of the set to ensure that Williams wouldn’t sweep the rest of the match.
She then threatened to break Williams trailing 2-1 in the second set. But Williams battled back from down 40-15 to win the game and shut down Sharapova’s best chance of getting back into the match.
The loss is Sharapova’s first in the opening round at the US Open in 13 appearances.
Williams advances to face American Catherine McNally in the second round on Wednesday.
This is Serena's best match of the year, and possibly in two years, and it's no shock at all.— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) August 27, 2019
She never lets Sharapova get anything less than her best. #USOpen
Wow. Serena is absolutely slaughtering Maria. Like I can’t even talk any more trash cuz this is just sad.— Auto Tinsley (@AgentTinsley) August 27, 2019
Serena. Is. Not. Messing. Around.— Michael Eaves (@michaeleaves) August 27, 2019
Serena Williams gave Maria Sharapova a beatdown on Arthur Ashe. 6-1 6-1 in 59 minutes. Brutal. https://t.co/991UXQ6sLC— George Bellshaw (@BellshawGeorge) August 27, 2019
Serena Williams destroysMaria Sharapova in less than 60 minutes.— Rap Game Forrest Gump 🇬🇭 (@Sixfever) August 27, 2019
What rivalry? pic.twitter.com/XuCLaFjn2q
with Yahoo Sport US