Originally written on Tennis Panorama  |  Last updated 11/18/14
  (October 27, 2012) In a repeat of  the London Olympic’s women’s singles gold medal match, Serena Williams will take on Maria Sharapova in the final of the WTA Championships in Istanbul as both women posted easy victories over their opponents on Saturday.   Williams swept past a very tired Agnieszka Radwanska in the first semifinal 6-2, 6-1, while Sharapova dominated No. 1 Victoria Azarenka 6-4, 6-2 – a day after Azarenka had secured the year-end top spot. “I probably had an idea that she was tired,” said Williams about Radwanska. The Pole played eight hours in matches, three-and-a-half hours just on Friday. “I told her (after the match during the handshake) it was awesome that she played so well and played through another match after playing a good eight hours,” Williams said. “Those last two matches really killed me, especially that I didn’t have the day off.  I really need that, Radwanska said. “And especially that surface.  You know, it’s very sticky, so three and a half hours is a lot.  I’m really tried today and I really wanted to run, but my legs didn’t.” “I’m not going to say that I was the freshest today, and I also don’t want to put the things to make an excuses because that’s not really my type, “ Azarenka told media after her loss to Sharapova.  “I don’t like to do it. “I give Maria all the credit today.  She played really well and looks in great form.  She deserved to win 100%. “Could I play better?  Yeah, I could have moved better for sure.  But it’s done today.  I have no regrets.  I finished the first time a loss with a smile.  And I don’t know, it didn’t feel as bad today.” “Everybody is hurting at this time.  Some show it more than others,” sharapova said when asked about her fitness. The Russian who is looking for her second WTA Championships crown, spoke about her match-up against Williams on Sunday: “I haven’t beaten her in a long time.  She’s certainly the one to beat this year, especially the second part of the year with the way she’s played. “Again, to be in the final of this event, I mean, I’m extremely proud.  No reason why I can’t go out there and give it my all.” Williams, looking for her third year-end title has not lost to Sharapova since the end of 2004.   TEB BNP PARIBAS WTA CHAMPIONSHIPS – ISTANBUL 2012 Istanbul, Turkey October 23-28, 2012 $4,900,000/SEC Hard/Indoors Results – Saturday, October 27, 2012 Singles – Semifinals (2) Maria Sharapova (RUS) d. (1) Victoria Azarenka (BLR) 64 62 (3) Serena Williams (USA) d. (4) Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) 62 61 Doubles – Semifinals Kirilenko/Petrova (RUS/RUS) d. (1) Errani/Vinci (ITA/ITA) 16 63 104 (2) Hlavackova/Hradecka (CZE/CZE) d. Huber/Raymond (USA/USA) 76(6) 61 Order Of Play – Sunday, October 28, 2012 Stadium (from 14.30hrs) 1. Doubles Final: Kirilenko/Petrova vs. Hlavackova/Hradecka 2. Singles Final: Serena Williams vs. Maria Sharapova (NB 17.00hrs)
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