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Serena prevails against Venus, Vinci awaits in US Open semis

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It was the match everyone has been waiting for all week, and for once it didn't even remotely disappoint. Serena Williams, seemingly getting better with age, in sight of a record equaling 22nd Grand Slam title and a Calendar Grand Slam, squared off against the most familiar opponent of her storied career, big sister Venus, with the duo having battled on tennis courts since they were 5 years old.

Now, nearly 30 years later, Venus, appeared to be having a renaissance of her own, playing the best tennis she has over the last half a decade. As the luck of the draw would have it though, she stood in the way of her little sister and tennis immortality.

Such occasions tend to be tear-jerkers, full of drama, but low on quality, this contest was anything but. Between them the Williams sisters produced an incredible 59 winners, slapping the cover off the ball at every opportunity.

The games went thick and fast as neither sister was in a mood to hang around. The opening four games went with serve, though Venus appeared to have started the brighter, showing a willingness to step in and take the ball early. It was Serena though who landed the first blow, breaking Venus' serve in the fifth game to nudge ahead 3-2. She was then to rattle off three more straight games in typical Serena fashion to storm through the opening set 6-2 in just 33 minutes.

Serena had played some high quality tennis in the first set, making just 2 unforced errors, and finding the lines on 15 shots of her own. That form would dissipate quickly in the second as she dropped serve with a poor double fault in the third game, and went on to lose her serve twice again as Venus raced through the second set 6-1 to level the match at a set apiece.

With the fans at Arthur Ashe Stadium going positively wild, Serena was to find another level as she usually does in big matches and out came the big guns. A break of serve in the second game of the decider put Serena 2-0 ahead, and though she needed to save a break point in the next game, it was smooth sailing from there on out for the world no.1. Even her elder sister wasn't going to delay her meeting with immortality.

With typical adoration from a hugging Venus at the end of the contest, Serena raised her arms in triumph, having prevailed for the 16th time in 27 official encounters with Venus, 6-2, 1-6, 6-3.

Up next for an increasingly emotional Serena is Italian veteran Roberta Vinci, who will be playing in her first ever Grand Slam semi-final. 32 year old Vinci, sliced backhand in tow, squeezed past Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 in another thrilling encounter.