Serena Defeats Azarenka To Retain Brisbane International Title

World number one, Serena Williams, has started the year 2014 in fine style by successfully defending her Brisbane International title with a 6-4 7-5 win over second seed Victoria Azarenka.

This is Serena’s 14th win in 17 meetings with Azarenka, whom she beat in last year’s US Open final for her 17th Grand Slam.

The 32-year-old American, who won 11 tournaments in 2013, lost her serve twice in the second set but broke back three times to overcome her opponent in 98 minutes.

The 2013 French Open winner is a five-time champion in Melbourne but has not won the title since 2010.

The straight-sets defeat of Belarusian Azarenka, extends her run of successive victories to 22 and ensured she went through the tournament, in which she beat world number four Maria Sharapova in the semi-finals, without dropping a set

The victory in Brisbane is the perfect start to the New Year for Serena after her remarkable achievements in 2013 where she won 78 of her 82 matches and had a career-best run of 34 consecutive wins.