US Open Tennis 2012: Day 12 Scores, Results and Recap

Brian Leigh@@BLeighDATFeatured ColumnistSeptember 7, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 07:  Serena Williams of the United States celebrates match point during her women's singles semifinal match against Sara Errani of Italy on Day Twelve of the 2012 US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The men's singles are cued up and ready to go tomorrow, but for today, the spotlight belonged to men's doubles and the women.

At a raucous and packed Arthur Ashe arena, a plethora of familiar faces squeaked, shrieked and—in the case of Victoria Azarenka—eked their ways to victory.

Let's break down Day 12, match by match.


(1) Victoria Azarenka def. (3) Maria Sharapova 3-6, 6-2, 6-4

In the most exhilarating match of the day, top-seeded Azarenka clawed back from a one-set deficit to advance to the U.S. Open finals.

Sharapova came roaring out of the gates, grunting her way to a 6-3 victory in the first set. Looking poised to pull the upset, Sharapova then fell victim to a fusillade of winners from Azarenka, who showed why she deserves the No. 1 seeding.

The win, while momentous in its own right, also shattered a couple of Sharapova's streaks. Sharapova had won 78 consecutive matches in which she took the opening sets and was also 12-0 in three-set matches this year.

Pretty darn impressive.


(4) Serena Williams def. Sara Errani 6-1, 6-2

The abbreviation def. doesn't really do justice to Serena Williams' semifinal performance. I was genuinely tempted to sub in des. for destroyed, or mas. for massacred.

Watching Serena overpower opponents is really more of a visceral experience. It's hard to explain with words—sometimes, you just actually need to watch.

Errani, a skilled player in her own right, looked hapless on the other side of the net. Every one of Serena's shots—the serve, the forehand, the backhand—they all just have so much zip. She really does play on another level than everybody else.

Azarenka better be ready for her in the finals.


(2) Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan def. (5) Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek 6-3, 6-4

Singles tennis usually gleams most of the attention, but history was made today on the doubles side.

The Bryan brothers had already completed the career Golden Slam by winning gold in London, but today's achievement was far greater: This U.S. Open victory—their 12th Grand Slam title—gave them the record for most team Grand Slams of all time. They passed the legendary Aussie duo of Mark Woodforde and Todd Woodbridge.

The Bryan brothers have been a tennis topic du jour this year (due to the Olympics), but now they get to take their indelible place in tennis history. 

They're the greatest team to ever play the game.