Serena Williams stuns world no. 2 Anett Kontaveit to keep US Open dreams alive
Serena Williams is a six-time US Open champion (Getty Images/Jean Catuffe)

Tennis icon Serena Williams kept her hopes alive of winning a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title as she overcame Estonia's Anett Kontaveit in stunning style.

The American powering through 7-6 (7-4), 2-6, 6-2 much to the delight of the home crowd roaring her on.

It was almost reminiscent of the Serena of old.

Facing adversary in the second set as she began to tire, but fighting hard to win the third and decisive set.

Even the first set tie-break was Serena Williams at her finest, playing clutch tennis.

The 40-year-old showed she still has what it takes to beat the best players in the world, and her serve, a powerful weapon, still proven to be one of the best the sport has ever seen.

After the match Serena, visibly delighted by her own display had this to say on her performance.

"I'm a pretty good player, this is what I do best. I love a challenge and I'm rising to it.

"I haven't played many matches but I've been practising really well. Now it's all coming together in New York."

The six-time US Open champion will face another tricky test in the form of Australian Ajla Tomljanoviฤ‡ 

The Croatian born is ranked 46 in the world and will no doubt be keen to upset the party.

But Serena clearly feels she is released of all pressure, knowing she has played so little tennis going into the final Grand Slamof the year, she's playing with the house money.

And she also has the additional asset of the adrenaline, support and energy from the crowd all willing her on to keep her US Open journey going.

Doubles

And tonight the legendary Williams sisters, Venus and Serena are back in action as they are set to star alongside each other one last time together in the doubles.

The American's face Czech pairing Linda Nosková and Lucie Hradecká.

This match could certainly be one to savour as the Serena and perhaps Venus farewell tour gathers pace.

The retirement conundrum

Monday and Wednesday night's impressive victories, a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Montenegrin Danka Koviniฤ‡, coupled with the Kontaveit shock, may have forced a retink.

Serena conceded that she loves the atmosphere on nights like those and will miss playing tennis on the world's biggest stages.

After all Serena hasn't put a date on when she will stop playing.

But it does seem unlikely that she will turn back on her decision to retire unless something extraordinary happens.

She has already confirmed in Vogue Magazine that she is 'evolving from life away from tennis'.

As well as spend more time with her family and young daughter Olympia.

And the stage already seems set for one of the legends of the sport to hang up her racquet on her own terms, on home soil, and at the tournament where she famously made her name as a teenager in 1999.

Her maiden Grand Slam, the first of 23 coming at the Big Apple.

But the romantics and Serena faithful will be hoping there is one last hurrah and that a 24th might be the ultimate way to bow out.

Friday's match with Tomljanoviฤ‡ promises to be another emotional and dramatic affair, and like much of her career, all eyes will be on Serena.

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