MADRID: Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova will battle it out for the world number one ranking when they meet in the Madrid Open final on Sunday after both came through Saturday’s semi-finals in straight sets.
While, Rafael Nadal cruised into his seventh consecutive final since returning from a seven-month injury layoff as he beat compatriot Pablo Andujar 6-0, 6-4 to reach the Madrid final.
Current number one, and defending champion, Williams sealed her place in the final as she overcame seventh seed Sara Errani 7-5, 6-2.
Sharapova will compete in her first Madrid final after beating Serbian Ana Ivanovic 6-4, 6-3.
Williams was first to book her place in the final as she edged a close first set when she broke in the 12th game before comfortably taking the second to progress in just over 90 minutes.
And the 15-time Grand Slam champion was happier with her performance against the Italian than the error-strewn display she produced against Spanish wildcard Anabel Medina Garrigues in the quarter-finals.