California, Mar 9: Ace tennis player Serena Williams defeated Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 7-5, 6-3 in the second round of BNP Paribas Open here on Friday night.
The American veteran and 10th seed, Williams took two hours and 17 minutes to enter the third rounds of the tournament, where she will face Garbine Muguruza of Spain.
The 23-time Grand Slam, Williams hit four aces and committed nine double faults, meanwhile, the 23 Grand Slam winner saved 11 break points out of 15.
The first set alone lasted for one hour and 13 minutes. The score was tied at 5-5 in the first set after which Williams accelerated and won the set 7-5.
In the final set, Serena finally sealed the match one of her signature aces.
"I truly love her, she’s a really good friend," she said.
“She’s (Azarenka) a fellow mom and she’s a former No 1 just like me. It’s hard to play someone you’re so close with but it’s also really invigorating and cool," she added.
“Playing champions like Victoria makes me realize I have a ton of improvement to do,” the American veteran noted.
Both the players returned from maternity leave last year. Ever since, Williams managed to break into the top ten position while Azarenka is fighting with all the difficulties to reinstate her form. (UNI)