Serena jumps for joy over third US Open titleSeptember 8th, 2008 - 1:18 pm ICT by IANS
New York, Sep 8 (DPA) Serena Williams tossed her racquet into the air and couldn’t stop jumping in hysterical joy after regaining the No.1 WTA ranking with a 6-4, 7-5 defeat of Jelena Jankovic for a third title at the US Open. The fourth seed picked up where she left off in 2002, her last title performance at the home venue.
After rushing into the stands Sunday to greet her family including Venus, the 26-year-old revealed that her big sister - whom she beat in the quarter-finals - had been helping her out.
“Venus gave me some strategy for my last two matches,” said the nine-time Grand Slam winner. “I’m so excited, this is one of my best victories. It is really special for me.
“I’ve been working so hard this year and it’s finally paid off.”
The final, delayed 24 hours by heavy rain, put Williams back on the top spot after her longest absence from the summit, more than five years.
Serena won her ninth Grand Slam title from 12 finals while second seed Jankovic was beaten in her first time on the largest stage.
Serena last held the top ranking for 57 consecutive weeks between July 8, 2002 and Aug 10, 2003. She has now won the New York event three times, also in 1999 and 2002.
The American recovered from a poor day on break point conversions, missing on nine of her first 10 in the up-and-down second set with the Serb second seed, who will stand second behind Serena in next week’s rankings.
But Serena found her big game when she needed it, breaking twice in the concluding six games and going through on her second match point as she tossed her racquet into the air after producing a winner.
Jankovic missed repeated opportunities, failing to take the match into a final set with four failed set points in the second.
“I got to my first Grand Slam final but it couldn’t have gone better,” said the outgoing Jankovic. “Serena was the better player today, she was too good tonight.”
Serena improved to 4-3 over her Balkan rival, earning a second straight win after the Miami final in March.
The match was the first final of any kind for Jankovic since successfully defending her Rome title in May.
Serena improved to 4-1 in 2008 finals and 32-12 overall in title matches. She struck 44 winners to just 15 for Jankovic.