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Serena bests Safina in Australian Open

Jan. 31, 2009 at 11:05 AM

MELBOURNE, Jan. 31 (UPI) -- American Serena Williams needed just 59 minutes to overpower Dinara Safina of Russia to win the Australian Open Saturday in Melbourne.

Williams bested Safina 6-0, 6-3 for her 10th major singles championship in what will be remembered as one of the most lop-sided finals in Australian Open history.

The win means the second-seeded Williams, who won the Australian Grand Slam event in 2003, 2005 and 2007, replaces Serbia's Jelena Jankovic as the world's No. 1 ranked player.

"She never even let me into the match," said the 22-year-old Safina. "She is a champion. She proved that."

After Williams held serve in the first game, Safina double-faulted the second game away and her play unraveled.

"I felt like I was in control from the third game," Williams said. "When she lost serve in her opening game after having a few chances to hold, I got a little more confident off that a lot."

Williams, 27, earned nearly $1.3 million for her 33rd career singles title and now has her sights set on the French Open.

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