2012 Australian Open: Victoria Azarenka Defeats Defending Champion Kim Clijsters, 6-4, 1-6, 6-3

Victoria Azarenka's shrieks continued into the third set.

She survived a break point to get her first lead since the first set then powered through the second game and broke Kim Clijster's serve on four-straight points. Fist pumps and shrieks continued to fuel Azarenka's game, but Clijsters broke back, thanks in part to an Azarenka double fault.

Down on her own serve with the games tied at 2-2, Clijsters stood on the other side of the net from Azarenka as she thrust another fist pump toward the tournament's defending champion.

Until Clijsters snuck in and dropped a backhand slice volley in an extreme cross court - and stared across the court. But then she double faulted the game away to give Azarenka the break. Their nerves seemed to flip flop with their service games.

Then unforced errors crept in for Clijsters. After five games, Azarenka led 4-1. The match momentum was in Azarenka's favor, but what about the nerves? What about Clijsters' experience?

Well, they dueled. Through four deuces and a 10-minute game Clijsters broke Azarenka to bring the defending champion back into the third set, 4-3.

As the commentators said, Azarenka wanted to get through to her first Grand Slam, but Clijsters wanted to keep her title.

With much of the crowd against her, Azarenka finished off the set with two match points. Clijsters hit a backhand wide to end the match in two hours and 12 minutes to end their semifinal match with a final score of 6-4, 1-6, 6-3 in the 22-year-old Belarusian's favor.

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