Top 5 Serena Williams' Victories over Maria Sharapova

Merlisa Lawrence Corbett@@merlisaFeatured ColumnistMay 11, 2013

Top 5 Serena Williams' Victories over Maria Sharapova

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    Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova will play for the No. 1 ranking tomorrow in the Madrid Open.

    It is their 14th meeting. Williams holds a 12-2 edge.

    When the two top players and two biggest names in women's tennis clash it's a marquee matchup. Anytime the No. 1 ranking is on the line it's a showdown.

    However, so lopsided have Williams' wins been over Sharapova that we can no longer consider this a rivalry. When one person in a so-called rivalry has won 11 straight, competition is now a quest for the loser. 

    What's going on between Williams and Sharapova is closer to Charlie Brown versus the football or the Coyote versus Road Runner.  You know how it will end, but you tune in anyway just to see how the defeat will go down. 

    Of course Williams turns 32 this summer and Sharapova is only 26.  So the Russian could pick up a few wins. However, Williams would have to play into her 40s for Sharapova to even the score.  

    It's just a bad matchup for Sharapova. Her biggest strength is power. At 6'2" Sharapova is taller than most women, and many men on tour. She uses penetrating ground-strokes to out-muscle opponents.

    Williams is better than Sharapova at all other facets of the game. She has a better serve, is better at the net, plays with more topspin and moves better.

    Sharapova's best chance is for Williams to have an off day.

    If not, Williams will have another clip to archive in a series of dominant wins over Sharapova. 

No. 5 Istanbul 2012

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    Williams entered the 2012 WTA Championships following a sensational summer.  

    She had won Wimbledon, a gold medal in the 2012 Olympics and the U.S. Open.

    Sharapova had put together a solid season herself. She won the 2012 French Open and a title in Rome. 

    Williams dominated Sharapova, winning 6-4, 6-3, capturing her third WTA Championships title.   

No. 4 Stanford 2011

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    Williams was mounting her comeback after overcoming foot surgery and a pulmonary embolism.

    It was her first match in the U.S. since her controversial outburst at the 2009 U.S. Open

    Unseeded, Williams needed the tuneup in Stanford to make a serious run at the U.S. Open.

    Sharapova was ranked No. 5 and Williams No. 169. Despite her higher ranking, Sharapova was still outmatched, as Williams produced superior angles in rallies. 

    Williams won 6-1, 6-3.  

No. 3 Doha 2013

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    Still chasing the No. 1 ranking, Williams came into the Qatar Open in Doha determined. 

    She reached the semifinals against Sharapova after a tough battle against Petra Kvitova.  

    The win over Kvitova meant Williams would return to No. 1. 

    Sharapova hung tough for a while, but again Williams proved too much, winning 6-3, 6-2.  

    Although Williams lost in the finals to then No. 1 Victoria Azarenka, she left the tournament with what she came for, the No. 1 ranking. 

No. 2 London Olympics 2012

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    On perhaps the biggest world stage in sports, Williams destroyed Sharapova in the gold medal match of the 2012 Olympics, 6-0, 6-1.

    They played the match on Centre Court at Wimbledon, the site of Sharapova's shocking upset over Williams in 2004.

    But since 2004, it's been all Williams.

    As stated in the British newspaper the Observer: "Such was Williams's dominance in the first set that at one point towards its end she had hit more aces than her opponent had won points."

    It was a comprehensive beat down. 

No. 1 Australian Open 2007

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    Williams stunned Sharapova at the 2007 Australian Open final.

    Williams entered the tournament unseeded and ranked No. 81. Sharapova was the No.1 seed and the overwhelming favorite. 

    Although considered out of shape and perhaps on her way out of the game, Williams was determined to reclaim her place as the top woman in tennis.

    She seemed to be playing with a chip on her shoulder, often starring Sharapova down.

    At 1:58 in the clip, Sharapova swings at an overhead and the ball hits Williams. The look given to Sharapova illustrates just how defiant Williams was that evening.   

    Ruthless, best describes the way Williams handled Sharapova in by far the worst beat down in the history of their so-called rivalry.