Serena Williams claimed her sixth Wimbledon title on Saturday and the 21st major title of her remarkable career.
At the age of 33, Williams seems to be playing the best tennis she has ever produced, having won the US Open, Australian Open, the French Open and now Wimbledon in succession, and is set to cement her name in the record books by completing the ever-elusive calendar grand slam.
It was one of the better finals in recent memory and 20th seed Garbine Muguruza put up a courageous fight against the intimidating presence that is Williams on Centre Court. Helped by Serena’s three double faults in the opening game, Muguruza broke straight away and stormed to a 2-0 lead.
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It wasn’t long before Williams had warmed up though and soon it was one-way traffic. Despite a last minute stand of resistance from Muguruza who battled back from 5-1 down in the second set, Williams eventually stormed through and took the match 6-4 6-4.
The 21-year-old Spaniard was playing in her first ever Grand Slam final and showed some flashes of what may see her lift the Rosewater dish herself someday. She played aggressively and it seemed only the occasion got the better of her as her last service game was riddled with unforced errors and she ultimately handed the championship to Serena.
She had a difficult run to the final, knocking out an impressive roster of players including former world number one Caroline Wozniacki and former Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwanska. The crowd’s standing ovation brought the runner-up to tears as she accepted her trophy and everyone, including Serena, is convinced she’ll be back on Centre Court in the near future. One thing’s for sure, she’ll definitely be inside the top 10 after her performance at this year’s Wimbledon.
Serena will be heading to Flushing Meadows with the chance to clinch the calendar Grand Slam by winning all four majors in the same year and equal Steffi Graf’s open-era record of 22 major career wins.
At this stage in her career, it seems completely possible that Williams could break Margaret Court’s pre-open era record of 24 Grand Slam titles. At 33, she has already overtaken Martina Navratilova as the oldest grand slam champion and shows no signs of slowing down. On the contrary, this feels like the American’s best chance to achieve one of the most difficult accomplishments in tennis.
If she is to do this though, Serena will have to iron out the creases that bothered her in the Wimbledon final this year. Williams was clearly nervous at the prospect of winning the Serena Slam, which sees her hold all four slams at the same time but not in the same year.
Uncharacteristic errors plagued the world number one and it seemed as though the possibility of winning her sixth Wimbledon title and her second Serena Slam may be too daunting. And it will be even more daunting in New York when the prospect of fulfilling a completely new goal hangs in the balance.
It’s the most exciting prospect in women’s tennis for a long time. With so many players suffering from inconsistency and few being able to really challenge Serena, fans are left to cheer for her to break every record there is going. And we’ll all be on the edge of our seats come September as we wait and see if Serena can fortify her name as the greatest to ever play the sport.
What do you think? Will Serena achieve the greatest triumph in tennis? Who could stop her in her tracks this year? Let us know by leaving your thoughts in the comments section below!