Sara Errani reached the Italian Open final in nearly 30 years on Saturday and she was the first home player to do so. However, being in the finals, she is going to face the equally fierce and competent Serena Williams. The vocal crowd was certainly a huge motivation for her and the the 10th-seeded Errani took full advantage of this and fought back from a 4-1 deficit in the second set for a 6-3, 7-5 win over sixth-seeded Jelena Jankovic.
Serena Williams on the other hand is now aiming for her third Rome title after she won this clay-court tuneup for Roland Garros in 2002 and last year. Talking about Williams career against Sara Errani, she stands at 6-0 and so far she has only lost one game to Errani which was in their last meeting, in the semifinals of last year's French Open. Errani was way too good with the crowd and drew tons of emotions from them about which she said that "There were a few moments when I thought I might not pull it off but the fans were huge." For now, Errani is aiming to become the first Italian to win the tournament since Raffaella Reggi took the 1985 title in Taranto. The last Italian man to win was Adriano Panatta back in 1976.
All through the match, the fans had cheered for Sara Errani, all the while boosting her morale. "(The crowd) was all on her side but it's normal, she's the local player," Jankovic said. "I tried to stay focused on my game, and play my tennis but she was the better player today." Errani is most thankful to this cheerful crowd as she says "Having them here is key. They give me that extra motivation so I'm not just playing for myself but for them, too, and that makes me even stronger."