Simona Halep was encouraged by the way she tested Serena Williams in the quarter-finals of the US Open but rued her inability to be more clinical after losing to the world number one.
Top seed Williams stayed on course to regain the title she has won six times at Flushing Meadows by beating Halep 6-2 4-6 6-3 at Arthur Ashe Stadium on Wednesday.
Halep, seeded five, has won just one of her nine encounters with the legendary American, but was able to trouble the 22-time major champion in New York.
The Romanian took her last-eight exit on the chin and did not feel she was far away from causing an upset.
"I think this was the best match that I ever had against her. I felt that I'm very close and I had chances to win." said Halep.
"I think my game was pretty good. It's a good thing. I can take confidence from this match.
"I think we played very well. I played very well. But I could do better in some moments."
She added: "I am a little bit disappointed that I could not take the chances, but I'm also happy about the way I stayed there and played."
Halep reflected on her performance in the final major of the year with satisfaction despite failing to at least match her achievement of reaching the semi-final stage last year.
"I definitely feel that I played much better than last year in the semis," she said.
"Semis is better than quarter-finals, but they are two different things. Last year I was not playing in the semis and this year I lost in the quarters, but I gave everything I could."