Serena Williams has again been denied a record-equalling 24th grand slam title after being beaten by precocious Canadian Bianca Andreescu in the US Open final.

Andreescu – a finalist at Auckland at the start of the year – stunned an out-of-sort Williams with a straight-set victory 6-3, 7-5, after dominating from the start.

The 37-year-old Williams has lost all three major finals she has reached since returning from giving birth, including to Naomi Osaka in Flushing Meadows last year. That match is best remembered for Williams' arguments with chair umpire Carlos Ramos.

Williams remains one behind Margaret Court's record for most Grand Slam trophies and is seeking her seventh at the US Open - 20 years after winning her first.

Canadian sensation Bianca Andreescu made a strong start in the first set.
Canadian sensation Bianca Andreescu made a strong start in the first set.

Meghan Markle on hand to support Serena

Meanwhile the Duchess of Sussex has flown to New York to support her friend Serena Williams compete in the final of the US Open, but not everyone agrees with her last-minute decision.

After the backlash she and husband Prince Harry faced over their flurry of private jet flights, four in just 11 days, The Times reports that Meghan flew commercial to New York. The Sun added that she left the UK this morning and is expected to return home at the end of the weekend.

"It's a last-minute trip," a source said. "Excited to support her friend and then come back."

It is thought Meghan flew solo, leaving baby Archie, who was born in May, in the care of Harry.

Reports say the Duchess is a keen Williams supporter and has been staying up late at night to watch her play in the semi-final. The game finished at 1am, UK time, and seven hours later Meghan boarded her flight to New York. It is thought she departed from Heathrow.

However, The New York Post claims the trip is damage control over the private jet backlash and the controversy that arose when she banned people from taking photos of her at Wimbledon earlier in the year.

"She's coming after the scandal over people taking photos of her at Wimbledon this summer and will come with at least two police protection officers," the source said, "but they won't be able to stop gawkers from taking photos".

The Post also claims William's team isn't exactly thrilled the Meghan will be at the final, worrying that her presence will distract from the game.


"Serena asked her coach about Meghan coming when she won last night and everyone is worried," the source said. "Tennis players are very superstitious, and Serena lost when Meghan came to watch her at Wimbledon."