NEW YORK (AFP) Kim Clijsters defended her US Open title on Saturday by crushing the challenge of a shell-shocked Vera Zvonareva 6-2, 6-1 in just 59 minutes, the fastest final since timing records were first kept. It was a blowout of a championship match with Clijsters clamping a stranglehold on the game from the first exchanges and never allowing the less-experienced Russian a chance to claw her way back into it. The popular Belgian second seed clinched her third Grand Slam title in style when she whacked another forehand winner past a bewildered Zvonareva. It was the 15th straight-set US Open women singles final in a row dating back to Steffi Grafs three-set win over Monica Seles in 1995 and at 59 minutes the quickest since timings were first kept in 1980. There has not been a more lop-sided US Open final since Maria Bueno of Brazil defeated Carole Caldwell Graebner of the United States 6-1, 6-0 in 1964. In a repeat showing of last year, Clijsters was joined on the Arthur Ashe Stadium court after the prize-award ceremony by two-and-a-half year-old daughter Jada and basketball-playing husband Brian Lynch. Her tough three-sets win over Venus Williams in the second of Fridayssemi-finals was her 20th straight win at Flushing Meadows spread over five years. Zvonareva, a year younger at 26, reached her first Grand Slam final at Wimbledon in July, losing in straight sets to Serena Williams, after proving that she could control her volatile temperament over the course of a Grand Slam tournament fortnight. She reached Saturdays final without losing a set and with a huge straight-set win over top seed and last years runner-up Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark in the semi-finals. The two finalists had played each other seven times, with Clijsters leading the series 5-2, but it was Zonareva who had won their last two encounters, including a three-set victory in the Wimbledon quarter-finals. Games went with serve until 3-2 for Clijsters when a Zvonareva double fault and two unforced errors set up a break point for the Belgian which she took when the Russian hit a forehand marginally long. Zvonareva tested Clijsters with some big-hitting down both flanks in the next game, but the second seed more than held her ground and her serve to lead 5-2. The defending champion then piled on the pressure to break Zvonareva to love in the following game for a one-set lead. Clijster won the first 10 points of the second set to jump out into a 3-0 lead with Zvonareva losing her cool and smashing her racquet in abject frustration. Zvonareva finally broke a run of nine games in a row against her to get to 3-1, but she just could not live with the relentless pressure that Clijsters was applying with each rally. The Russian did manage one break point in the following game, but Clijsters blasted that out of the way to take a 4-1 ahead. A double fault from Zvonareva set up another break point which she saved with a timely ace, but Clijsters then hit a booming forehand winner and a second double fault from the Russian made it mission impossible for her.