Serena Williams sent an ominous warning to her title rivals with a ’double bagel’ victory over Andrea Hlavackova to reach the quarter-finals of the US Open.
The fourth seed is the favourite to win a fourth US Open crown at Flushing Meadows after her stellar summer that brought victory at Wimbledon and two Olympic gold medals.
Hlavackova and fellow Czech Lucie Hradecka were beaten by Williams and sister Venus in the doubles finals at both Wimbledon and the Olympics.
So the American was certainly not the opponent she would have hoped to see across the other side for her first appearance in singles in the fourth round of a slam.
In the first set Hlavackova was completely outplayed and won only 10 points but she never let her head drop and was close to winning a game on a number of occasions in the second set.
She even had her first break point when Williams served for victory but she could not take it and the 30-year-old wrapped up a 6-0 6-0 win after 57 minutes.
Williams hit 31 winners and made only seven unforced errors to set up a quarter-final clash against Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic, who she has beaten in their three previous meetings.
Williams said: “Andrea played really well today, even though it was love and love. She never gave up so it was really important for me to stay super focused. I think I played really well today, I haven’t played like this in the whole tournament.”