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Serena to face Errani for Rome crown

Rome, Italy (SportsNetwork.com) - Serena Williams has returned to the Italian Open final after exacting a measure of revenge.

The world No. 1 and defending champion posted a 6-1, 3-6, 6-1 win over Ana Ivanovic in the semifinals on Saturday.

Ivanovic eliminated Williams in their previous encounter in the fourth round of the Australian Open back in January.

After the match began with a couple long service games, Williams won the last five games in the opening set.

However, Williams couldn't carry the momentum into the second set as the 11th-seeded Ivanovic rebounded nicely. The Serbian earned a second break of serve for a 4-0 lead with a cross-court forehand winner and fended off a late surge from Williams to win the set.

Williams was back in top form in the third set, winning 84 percent of her points on serve and ending the match with her fifth ace.

The American's opponent in Sunday's final will be Italian crowd favorite Sara Errani.

The 10th-seeded Errani defeated Serbian and former two-time Rome champion Jelena Jankovic 6-3, 7-5 earlier Saturday on the red clay at Foro Italico.

Errani, who earned 16 break points and converted five, is attempting to become the first Italian to win the tournament since Raffaella Reggi captured the title in 1985.

In order to end the home nation's drought, Errani will need to beat Williams for the first time. Williams, who also won the title at this event in 2002, is 6-0 lifetime against Errani.

05/17 14:38:55 ET