On Wednesday Serena Williams despite the scorching heat at the Australian Open, beat Russia's Svetlana Kuznetsova 5-7, 7-5, 6-1, advancing to the semi-finals.
Williams described her experience during Wednesdays match as an out-of-body experience as she played at first with and open arena roof under the brutal heat. The roof was then closed and the air conditioner was cranked up; helping the defending champion pull herself together and advance to the semifinals.
Her opponent was left steaming and angry with the decision as the roof was closed after she won the first set and the heat was taking a toll on Williams with temperatures soaring to 109 degrees on a cloudless day.
Williams, seeking her fourth Australian title and 10th Grand Slam championship overall, next faces Olympic gold medalist Elena Dementieva, who had to play her entire match with the roof open. The fourth-seeded Dementieva ousted Carla Suarez Navarro 6-2, 6-2 to run her winning streak to 15 matches after she won two tuneup tournaments.
The heat wave is forecast to continue Thursday. If Williams wins — Dementieva has won their last three meetings, including the Olympic quarterfinals — she would play a Russian for the third consecutive match in the final. Third-seeded Dinara Safina is facing fellow Russian Vera Zvonareva in the other semifinal.