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Tennis: Simple for Serena Williams as she wins eighth final in a row

Serena Williams breezed past Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-2, 6-1 in the final of the Brisbane International.

In a one-sided affair, the 15-times grand slam champion, pictured right, needed just 51 minutes to defeat Pavlyuchenkova, who had no answer to Williams throughout the match.

The American was able to convert both of her break point chances in the first set. With her service game also proving deadly, she won 11 of 12 points on her first serve including five aces.

From there, the result was a formality as Williams once again overpowered Pavlyuchenkova, taking the final set 6-1 to claim the tournament for the first time.

Williams has now won her past eight finals since losing the 2011 US Open to Sam Stosur, with her latest triumph sending an ominous warning to the rest of the women’s field ahead of the Australian Open.

Meanwhile, top seed Li Na survived a mid-match meltdown to overcome Czech Klara Zakopalova 6-3, 1-6, 7-5 in the final of the inaugural Shenzhen Open yesterday, earning the Chinese a seventh career title.

World No.7 Li, who won the 2011 French Open, looked in danger of disappointing the home fans after surrendering her serve in the first game of the deciding set.

Li, who beat fellow Chinese Peng Shuai 6-4, 6-0 in Friday’s semi-finals, hit back to win five of the next six games but, from 5-2 up, allowed fifth seed Zakopalova to pull herself level at 5-5.

In a topsy-turvy finish encapsulating the match, Li collected herself to put together two solid games.

 

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