Serena Williams continued her dominance in female tennis after she cruised to a straight sets victory over Victoria Azarenka to win the Brisbane International.

The American, 32, beat the Belorussian 6-4 7-5 in 98 minutes to win her first title of 2014, picking up from her eleven 2013 wins. Williams faced a demanding tournament as she had already beaten Maria Sharapova 6-2 7-6 in the semi-finals the day before in a grinding result.

However, Williams was glad to have such difficult preparation, saying: “I feel like I’m being pushed into the deep end straightaway.

“I think it’s a good thing. In Melbourne if I have to face Maria again I’ll know a little bit more what to expect, and same thing with Victoria. If I happen to play her in Melbourne, I’ll know what to do and what to expect.”

Williams has a sensational record against Azarenka, winning fourteen out of her last seventeen matches against the world number two.

She is odds-on favourite to win the Australian Open, starting next Monday, and after she beat Azarenka to claim her fifth US Open title and seventeenth singles slam she will be hoping that those two wins in two days will be the reference point in her journey to an eighteenth.

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