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Wednesday, Feb 26th

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Vicky Duval will take Serena Williams’ place in the United States’ opening tie against Ukraine today. The world No.1 made the decision after an early practice session at Perth Arena this morning.

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The ITF announced today that Serena Williams of the United States and Novak Djokovic of Serbia are the 2015 ITF World Champions. Williams is named Women’s World Champion for the sixth time, while this is the fifth occasion that Djokovic has received the honour.

Martina Hingis of Switzerland and Sania Mirza of India become Women’s Doubles World Champions, while Jean-Julien Rojer of Netherlands and Romania’s Horia Tecau are Men’s Doubles World Champions. Hingis is an ITF World Champion 15 years after last being named World Champion in singles in 2000, while Tecau was previously World Champion in boys doubles in 2002.

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Williams Advanced Engineering, the engineering services and technology division of the Williams Group, is pleased to announce that it has won the “Most Innovative New Motorsport Product” award for the Formula E battery at the Race Tech World Motorsport Symposium.

Having just celebrated its tenth anniversary, the Race Tech World Motorsport Symposium has been described as the “Davos of Motorsport” and has built a reputation as the most prestigious international event and forum organised for the who's who of motorsport engineering. Williams Advanced Engineering’s Managing Director, Craig Wilson, collected the award at the Symposium’s awards dinner held at Birmingham’s Hotel Du Vin on Monday 30th November.

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Williams’ 1996 world champion Damon Hill will celebrate the 20-year anniversary of his title with the team at the 2016 Autosport International Show.

Williams will be a major feature of the show in January, with the team’s eight-metre-tall track hospitality unit constructed inside the Birmingham NEC, next to the Autosport Live Stage. There will also be a selection of Heritage cars displayed at the stand, including Hill’s title-winning FW18.

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The legend that is the Williams sisters in women's tennis continues to grow as 35 year old Venus wrote another chapter in his storied history by winning the Wuhan Open to claim the 47th singles title of her illustrious career.

Venus, a 7-time Grand Slam champion, has had a mixed year, struggling to make a real impact in the Grand Slams, but there were indications she was back to her best at the US Open near the close of the year as she powered through the early rounds before losing to younger sister Serena in a close contest.

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Autosport International announced today that 2016’s show will host a major feature by Williams. The incredible WILLIAMS MARTINI RACING motorhome will be installed next to the Autosport Live Stage, the first time it has ever been constructed away from a race circuit, offering unprecedented fan engagement. Other features will celebrate Williams Advanced Engineering and Williams Heritage.

Autosport International takes place from 14-17 January 2016 at the Birmingham NEC. Motorsport fans will be treated to a celebration of Williams, covering the history of Sir Frank Williams’ racing team, including a selection of the cars and famous faces that have made it so successful.

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Serena Williams' pursuit of Steffi Graf's 1998 accomplishment - a Calendar Grand Slam - and her Open Era record of 22 Grand Slam titles has been put on hold as the world no.1 crashed out in incredible fashion to unseeded Italian Roberta Vinci in the semi-finals of the US Open on Friday afternoon.

In what was truly an incredible match, Vinci's desire to run down every ball and her all court game stunted the legendary American's prowess when it appeared for all money that recreating history was in Serena's grasp.

In the first of the women's semi-finals on Friday, 26th seed Flavia Pennetta had already set hearts aflutter when she stunned world no.2 Simona Halep 6-1, 6-3 in what was largely a one-sided contest. Halep, who had put in so much in her quarter-final victory over Victoria Azarenka, appeared to be running on empty and made uncharacteristic errors to hand Pennetta an easy win.

Flavia raced through the opening set and apart from a momentary blip when she lost three games in a row to surrender a 3-1 lead in the second, appeared in complete control of the contest. Flavia, rattled off the last 5 games of the match, including 19 of the last 21 points to romp into her first Grand Slam Final.

The defeat of Halep would have given Serena Williams a further boost heading into her semi-final match, knowing that she had two Italians, who had never beaten her standing in her way and history.

The first set went comfortably Serena's way as she raced through it 6-2 in 31 minutes, and it seemed like only a matter of time before she would take her record against Roberta Vinci to 5-0.

However, Vinci developed some self belief in the second set and made Serena work harder for every point, giving virtually nothing away. Roberta also started venturing further forward, looking to take advantage of her exceptional volleying skills to stretch the contest.

Suddenly out of nowhere she picked up a break of serve against the run of play and made the most of the opportunity to nick the set 6-4 and force the match into a decider.

Usually when she finds her back to the wall, Serena finds another level, that second set though had taken a lot out of her physically, and Vinci just wasn't giving her any free points. As her frustration grew, so did her unforced error count, and Serena made 19 in the third set alone, almost as many as she had in the first two sets combined.

The duo traded breaks early in the set before Vinci broke Serena in the 7th game to take what proved to be the decisive break. A nervy hold extended her advantage to 5-3, but Serena wasn't going to give up without a fight and she held on to her own serve to make Vinci have to serve for a play in the decider.

First serves continued to elude Vinci, who landed only 11 of 30 in the entire final set, yet she held serve amazingly to love to wrap up a thrilling 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 win and book her place in her maiden Grand Slam final.

Women's Semi-final

[26] F Pennetta d. [2] S Halep 6-1 6-3

R. Vinci d. [1] S Williams 2-6 6-4 6-4

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