Serena Williams’ seems determined to make yet morehistory by claiming her third Hopman Cup title in Perth, after clinchingvictory with her compatriot, John Isner in the mixed-team competition in theirfinal group match. The Czech Republic went into the tie knowing that they onlyneeded to win one of the three rubbers to qualify for Saturday’s final, butwere unable to withstand the power from the two Americans and succumbed to a3-0 defeat instead.

Williams has not enjoyed the easiest of weeks in theAustralian heat so far, having lost as many sets in the singles as she has won,but managed to draw on her reserves once again to take the singles’ rubber againstLucie Safarova with a mammoth effort, 6-3 6-7 7-6.

The final two sets went totie-breaks, Williams losing the first disappointingly 7-1 but then taking thesecond one 8-6. It followed on from a three set victory over Flavia Pennetta and a thrashing at the hands of Canadian, Eugenie Bouchard in the previous group games.

Isner had few such problems in his singles’ match againsta man ranked only 239 in the world, overcoming Adam Pavlasek 7-6 6-2, andfiring down twenty aces. The match was over in 67 minutes as the Americansought to push the tie to the decisive mixed-doubles match.

With the fate of qualification still hanging in thebalance, the American pair were never in serious trouble in their doublesmatch, taking it 6-3 6-3 to progress to the final.

Williams has been struggling with fatigue during her lastfew singles’ matches but seemed full of energy at the end against Safarova,claiming she felt like she could still run 10km. She would have preferred asmoother ride no doubt, although the extra unexpected practise will probablyserve her well in her acclimatisation for the pursuit of her 19thGrand Slam later in the month.

America topped the group thanks to the win and will now bechasing their seventh Hopman Cup title in the final, which will see them faceone of either Poland, France or Great Britain, depending on the results of thefinal games in the other group.