Serena Williams looking to take control of the Roman empire from gladiator Sara Errani

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Defending champion Serena Williams will meet Sara Errani in the Italian Open final.
Williams beat Ana Ivanovic 6-1 3-6 6-1 on Centre court to progress.
But she will face a real Italian gladiator in Sara Errani in the final. And here’s what she had to say about that game on Centre court tomorrow. . .

What were your reactions about the match, are you happy with the way you won?
She played really well in the 2nd set, made a great return and I lost a little of patience and I had to regain and it was ok. I don’t know what it was in the 2nd set, but the next I’ll know it and try to stay focused.

How do you pull yourself back from that?
Stay focused, pumped, positive and try my best to stay relaxed and positive. It isn’t the end of the world.

How good is it to have Venus around?
Good, she’s getting some good practice and giving some good matches. I mean practice matches and watching it actually helps her a lot. It’s really good for her.

What about tomorrow’s match with Sara? Your last meeting on clay was last year at the French. Did you watch her during this week?
I have. She’s improved, she took her game on to a different level, she’s so much confident beating two top players, and is a very good clay court player.
I have a lot of work to do tomorrow, she has nothing to lose, she has the crowd behind her…. I just take one match at the time and now I am in the final, so it’s interesting and I wasn’t expecting that.

When you pulled out of Madrid there were any thought of of pull to this tournament too?
Yes, but I love this tournament so much so I said to me let’s see what happens, to start as late as possible and this result is completely unexpected.

You and Errani faced six times, the first time was six years ago here in Rome. Do you remember it?
Yes, I remember it was the court with the statues. She was really young and she was a fighter, I’ll never forget that… The crowd won’t be a problem, it’s a sort of warm-up form going into the French Open where the crowd is so intense so I think this is the best thing I could have to get ready for that.


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