As if achieving another “Serena Slam” wasn’t enough, Williams also surpassed Martina Navratilova by almost four weeks as the oldest women’s grand slam victor in the Open Era. And she has a shot at the ture Grand Slam, all four in a calendar year.
Saturday’s 6-4, 6-4 victory over Garbiñe Muguruza of Spain in the Wimbledon final gave her wins in the first three legs of the Slam, which could make this year’s U.S. Open in New York quite an occasion. Two down, two to go.
“It’s huge. But I haven’t done it. I have the Serena Slam now, which is incredible”.
Steffi Graf is sure to be watching closely as the US Open unfolds.
Serena Williams became the oldest woman to win a Grand Slam singles title in the Open era, and in scintillating form that suggests no end is in sight for her career.
Williams said “I feel nearly better now” physically than she did after completing her first “Serena Slam“, back in 2003.
“There’s a reason”, she said, “that it’s been 27 years since it’s been done”. It was the briefest of windows, but it was open.
Muguruza didn’t go away tamely, either, making matters interesting after trailing 5-1 in the second. “I’m really nice right now but sooner or later it’s going to be cut out because I can’t think about that”.
“Then I just thought, “Oh, man, I’ve won New York three times in a row””.
“Usually I’m singing a song in my head (on court), then if I stop singing it I usually start losing”. I don’t want to be beaten consistently by anyone. That’s how I got through this.
It was not an easy path to the Wimbledon title for Williams.
The Serena I saw on Saturday started out very, very, very shaky, knowing full well that history was on the line and that she was facing a confident, capable opponent who liked to get out of the gates quickly. After only 15 double faults in her first six matches here, Williams finished this match with eight more. That would be a step up for 2014.
Djokovic is 47-3 in 2015 after collecting a fifth Australian Open as well as Masters titles at Indian Wells, Miami, Monte Carlo and Rome. She wasn’t out there just to play a final.
She went on a beach break with her pal, Caroline Wozniacki, and she kicked back. “Hopefully I’ll do well at the Open and then I can answer that question”. But she explained that the key to succeeding at Flushing Meadows will be to take the same approach as at Wimbledon: regard it as a one-off tournament, not as the latest step in a long, triumphant sequence. “We were both so nervous”. You support me a lot and I can feel it so much. So that’s kind of the mind frame I have to have. “I prefer to be relaxed”.
Throughout Wimbledon, Williams put a finger to her lips when someone asked about either the Serena Slam or Grand Slam. She’s lost just one match on tour overall this entire year.
“She came out there to win”. Having equalled the achievements of her fellow American legends, she was satisfied. His breathtaking demolition of Andy Murray in Friday’s semifinal was a throwback to his years of Grand Slam dominance when he captured 16 of his 17 majors in a seven-year spell. But there is an air of maturity and satisfaction about her that was missing here in the second round of the doubles previous year, when she left the tournament suffering from a mysterious dizzy spell after serving four double faults in a row. “I would be the worst coach ever”.
“It would be fantastic”.
Four years on she has no real tennis rivals.
Williams’s whole approach to interviews this summer was to shut down any discussion of these themes. I know how hard it’s going to be. That would be great.
“I feel like I’ll be OK”.