Serena Williams ended the run of Washington DC champion Magdalena Rybarikova with an hour on the clock - her next opponent, Agnieszka Radwanska, needed twice that to edge Sara Errani.
WTA Staff

TORONTO, Canada - Serena Williams stormed into the semifinals of the Rogers Cup in exactly an hour on Friday, snapping the win streak of Washington DC champion Magdalena Rybarikova, 61 61.

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The No.1-seeded Williams dropped serve at love in the fourth game of the second set but apart from that put on a serving clinic, holding her other six serve games - and breaking the Slovak six times.

"I'm definitely happier with the return game today," Williams said after the match. "I could still use some improvement. She served pretty well, but I was pretty happy with the results from the match today."

Williams has now dropped a total of just 10 games through her first three matches - five against Francesca Schiavone in her opener, three against No.13 seed Kirsten Flipkens in her second match and now two against Rybarikova, who had just won the International-level event in DC last week.

"I'm definitely feeling pretty good, playing much better than I have in the past month, I'd say," Williams said. "I'm glad I'm getting back to the feeling and getting into a good rhythm out there again."

The World No.1 is also 8-0 since her fourth round loss at Wimbledon at the hands of Sabine Lisicki.

"I just felt like I was too tight, and just put a lot of pressure on myself there," she said of the loss at the All-England Club. "I just needed to relax more than anything, which is what I'm doing now."

Next up for Williams is the No.3 seed, Agnieszka Radwanska, who spent twice as long on the court to win her quarterfinal earlier on, outlasting No.5 seed Sara Errani in a tight two-setter, 76(1) 75.

In a match where the serve clearly wasn't a huge factor - the players broke each other 10 times in a row at one point in the first set - it was Radwanska who always came through on the important points, including a pair of set points in the first set, one with Errani serving at 5-4 and another with the Italian serving at 6-5. After tucking away the first set Radwanska seemed to go on cruise control, building a 3-1 lead right away, but Errani didn't go away, getting the break back and staying even through 5-all.

But one last push put Radwanska across the finish line after two hours and a minute.

Williams has beaten Radwanska in all five of their previous meetings. Four of those have been routine two-setters, and in the only one that went to three sets - Williams' 61 57 62 win in the Wimbledon final last year - the American actually originally led 61 42 before letting the Pole back into the match.

"It's a good match-up," Williams said. "She does everything so well. She's having a much better year. It's going to be an interesting match. It's definitely not going to be easy. I hope I can play well.

"I can only hope that I come out on top."