A much anticipated showdown between Serena Williams and Coco Gauff wasn’t meant to be in Auckland, but fret not tennis fans: another matchup pitting Serena against a future potential leader of American tennis highlight's Saturday's semifinals. For the first time, the 23-time major champion will square off against 18-year-old Amanda Anisimova.

If it wasn’t for Gauff’s show-stealing Wimbledon performance against Venus Williams, we’d be hearing a lot more about the 2019 French Open semifinalist. Last year, Anisimova posted wins over Petra Kvitova and Aryna Sabalenka (twice on the Grand Slam stage) and took out defending champion Simona Halep on her way to the last four in Paris.

Playing her first full season with Carlos Rodriguez in her corner, Anisimova cruised in her first two matches, before squeaking by a resurgent Eugenie Bouchard in a topsy-turvy three setter Friday night. The No. 3 seed secured the 13th break of the match after a 13-minute game to take a 5-4 lead in the third set, and went on the serve out the contest.

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Match of the Day: Serena Williams vs. Amanda Anisimova, Auckland

Match of the Day: Serena Williams vs. Amanda Anisimova, Auckland

In a more straight-forward encounter, Serena made quick work of an in-form Laura Siegemund, despite the German’s stellar 82 percent of first serves in play. The 38-year-old—also through to the doubles final with Caroline Wozniacki—clearly put in work this off-season, and is once again the oddsmakers favorite to win both Auckland and the forthcoming Australian Open.

Playing Serena is every aspiring tennis star’s dream, but Anisimova will actually get to fulfill it. The age gap is enormous, and could potentially affect Serena’s nerve. Serena owned seven major titles (one singles, four doubles, two mixed doubles) before Anisimova was even born.

“If you’re playing someone that much younger, you’re going to be nervous,” Chris Evert said after Gauff’s victory over Venus.

Anisimova has the talent and confidence to go toe to toe with Williams from the ground, but will need to serve lights out to have a chance. If Bouchard converts six breaks of serve, imagine what Serena is capable of doing. Expect the teenager to put up a fight, but in the end, Serena’s overwhelming firepower should give her another shot to raise her first trophy in three years.

Match of the Day: Serena Williams vs. Amanda Anisimova, Auckland

Match of the Day: Serena Williams vs. Amanda Anisimova, Auckland