Serena Williams gets easy win in US Open return

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Serena Williams' first US Open singles match since her 2009 foot-fault tirade came and went, quickly and quietly.

Williams began her bid for a fourth championship at Flushing Meadows and 14th Grand Slam title overall with a 6-1, 6-1 victory over 54th-ranked Bojana Jovanovski of Serbia on Tuesday night.

The 29-year-old American was greeted warmly by the Arthur Ashe Stadium crowd as she walked out to play, a far cry from the ugly scene at the same court two years ago, when Williams produced a profanity-laced, racquet-brandishing tirade at a line judge after a foot-fault call.

That infamous outburst came at the end of a semifinal loss to eventual champion Kim Clijsters. Williams drew an immediate $10,000 fine from the US Tennis Association and later was hit with a record $82,500 fine from the Grand Slam administrator.

She also faced a "probationary period" at Grand Slam tournaments in 2010 and 2011, and was told she could be suspended from the U.S. Open if she had another "major offense."

There was no such fuss on Tuesday.

Williams made only 10 unforced errors, compiled 22 winners, never faced a break point, and needed only 56 minutes to wrap things up.

Williams missed last year's US Open because of surgery on her right foot after cutting it on glass at a restaurant in Germany in July. That was part of a series of health scares - including clots in her lungs, and a gathering of blood under the skin of her stomach - that sidelined her for nearly a year.

The US Open is the fifth tournament of her comeback. She won hard-court tuneup events at Stanford and Toronto in August, her first consecutive titles since 2008.

"I'm so happy to be here. I didn't think I would make it," said the 28th-seeded Williams, whose ranking fell to 175th last month because of all that time off. "I just feel so blessed. I'm so happy."

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