NEW YORK -- Serena Williams is the only woman in this U.S. Open who hasn't dropped a set yet.
With 14 career Grand Slam singles titles and counting, she may well be the best woman ever to pick up a tennis racquet.
And she holds a 9-1 career record against her opponent in Saturday night's U.S. Open final -- world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka.
So, what are the normally-confident Azarenka's thoughts about facing the mighty Serena?
"If you look at our record it says it all," Azarenka, 23, said after an epic 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 semifinal victory over No. 3 Maria Sharapova that required 2 hours, 42 minutes in Arthur Ashe Stadium. "I haven't won any last meetings [against Williams] so I definitely need something to surprise her [Saturday] because she's in a great form, feeling very confident right now. She has everything on her side."
After crushing No. 10 Sara Errani of Italy, 6-1, 6-2 in 1 hour, 4 minutes, Williams flashed a huge smile and hardly seemed concerned about Saturday's final.
"It's really awesome," said Williams, who has won three titles here, her last coming in 2008. "This is what I wanted and what I dreamed of all year. I started out a little nervous but I'm really happy. I'm in the final again and I'm just excited about it."
Said Errani: "When she plays like this, I think she's the best player in the world...Azarenka is a strong player, but I think Serena is another level."
Each finalist has one won Grand Slam title this year, with Azarenka capturing the Australian Open in a rout over Sharapova and Williams winning Wimbledon. Williams crushed Azarenka, 6-1, 6-2 in the Olympic semifinals before routing Sharapova for the gold.
Asked to assess Azarenka's chances against Serena, Sharapova said: "Everyone has a chance and she's No. 1 in the world. There's no reason why she shouldn't have a chance."
Still, Azarenka knows she will have to return well against Serena, who leads the women's draw with 50 aces and has topped out at 124 mph on her serve.
"I have to try to return well and serve because with Serena it's not really the long rallies," Azarenka said. "It's all about who grabs the first opportunities, who is more brave to step it up right from the beginning."
Asked if she planned to watch any video of her previous matches against Serena, Azarenka cracked, "I don't want to be depressed. I mean, why? It's not something that you can look at."
In the first match of the day, Azarenka overcame a sluggish and nervous first set to conquer Sharapova in three sets to remain perfect in three-set matches this year at 12-0.
Both women grunted and groaned loudly across a 2-hour, 42-minute epic on a humid, muggy day inside Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Azarenka dropped her serve twice in a first set in which Sharapova played brilliantly, and was then broken in the first game of the second set.
But Azarenka recovered to hand Sharapova three breaks in the second and took the set on Sharapova's serve with a forehand put-away at the net.
"I'm just not trying to focus on the score and I try to give whatever it takes," Azarenka said. "I know that my opponent is going to play hard and I want to make sure that I play harder.
"I just want to give it my all and that works for me to pull it out."
After a 10-minute break triggered by the heat index, the two women held serve through the first nine games of the final set, before Sharapova cracked and fell behind 4-5, 0-30. She won the next two points to even it at 30-all.
But on that point, Sharapova, a right-hander, was forced to hit a left-handed forehand as she scrambled to her left. She got the ball back, but Azarenka smacked a forehand winner to get to match point.
On that point, Sharapova ultimately smacked a forehand long, sending Azarenka into her first U.S. Open final.
"It was 4-all and anything could happen," Sharapova said. "It just didn't go my way."
By the time early evening had come and the temperature had cooled, things didn't go Errani's way, either.
The French Open finalist was simply overmatched by Williams, who won 60 points to Errani's 35.
Asked about potentially winning another final, Serena said, "It will be great, I would love it. Obviously, Victoria wants to win too but I'm American, guys, so the last one standing.
"Go USA. It's an Olympic year, we can do this."
She certainly is playing like she can.
Bryan brothers win record 12th doubles title
Bob and Mike Bryan made history by winning their record 12th major doubles championship when they beat Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek, 6-3, 6-4, to capture the men's doubles title.
The Bryans won their fourth U.S. Open crown and surpassed the Australian team of Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, who had won 11 titles in the Open Era.
"We're extremely pumped to leave 2012 with a Grand Slam title," Bob said. "I think it's eight years in a row now we've at least got away with one of them, which we're very proud of."
The Bryans won't have much time to celebrate as they are slated to play in the Davis Cup semifinals next weekend against Spain on clay.
"Obviously when you win a string of matches your confidence grows," Mike said. "It's going to be a different surface, and we're going to have to work to beat two very good clay-court doubles players.
"We're leaving tomorrow night. We're going to get there a week early and we will have some time to get ready. But, yeah, we're pretty happy with the way we're playing right now."
Spain will be without Rafael Nadal for the time because he is resting his knee. John Isner and Sam Querrey will play singles in the post-Andy Roddick Era.