LONDON — Serena Williams is just one win away from another Grand Slam milestone.
The top-ranked Williams maintained her 11-year dominance over Maria Sharapova, beating the Russian 6-2, 6-4 on Thursday to reach her eighth Wimbledon championship match and 25th career Grand Slam final.
In beating Sharapova for the 17th straight time, the five-time Wimbledon champion won her 26th consecutive Grand Slam match. She’s going for a fourth straight major title — a “Serena Slam” — and the third-leg of a calendar-year Grand Slam.
“At least I made it to a final of four,” Williams said. “That’s pretty good. That’s pretty good.”
Williams served 13 aces, including three in the final game, had 29 winners and never faced a break point in overpowering the fourth-seeded Sharapova, who hit six double-faults and couldn’t find a way to cope with her rival’s relentless pace.
“When she stepped up her game, I was able to step up mine as well,” Williams said.
It will be Williams’ first appearance in the Wimbledon final since 2012, when she won the last of her titles.
“I think it definitely gets better,” she said. “It’s been a long time since I’ve been in the final here. I just feel really good just to be in another final, so it’s really cool.”
Williams’ opponent in Saturday’s final will be 21-year-old Garbine Muguruza, who beat Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 in the first semifinal. She’s the first Spanish woman to advance to the Wimbledon final since Arantxa Sanchez Vicario in 1996.
Thumbnail photo viaÂ Susan Mullane/USA TODAY Sports Images