Serena Williams, the Grand Slam Queen of Aces, and the top seeded American at Wimbledon, continued her Grand Slam dominance with a close, but not so close victory over Victoria Azarenka of Belarus during a singles match at the All England Lawn Tennis Championships. Williams rallied to beat Azerenka 3 -6, 6 -2, 6 -3 on center court. She dropped the first set, but evened out, grunting and strutting her way through the rest of the match with an uncontested 17 aces.
The top seeded champ said, “it’s been up and down, up and down, but somehow I’m still alive.” This will be the first time she reached the Wimbledon semifinals since 2012, when she served up the last of her five titles at the All England Club. Azarenka said,”We just saw today why Serena is No.1.” The Women’s Champion is going for her 4th straight major title, the whispers of “Serena Slam” have buzzed throughout the tennis world. She recently defeated her sister Venus in straight sets, 6-4, 6-3, an enormous victory for Serena who has 13 Grand Slam titles in her historic career.
Williams needs the Wimbledon and the U.S Open titles to complete the set and become the first person to win a calendar year Grand Slam since her predecessor Steffi Graff did back in 1988. This year is the first time Serena has come into Wimbledon as the defending champion of the Australian Open and French Open. She won the French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, but an injury sidelined the tennis phenom forcing her to miss the Australian Open. In 2003, Williams completed the Serena Slam at the Australian Open. Serena Williams is the Queen of Aces and Grand Slam terminator. In addition to her five singles titles at Wimbledon, she has also won five doubles titles and one mixed doubles title.
The Queen of Aces boasts an incredible winning percentage at Wimbledon, .878. Her best winning percentage at a major is the U.S. Open, with .898. She also holds, to no surprise, the record for the most aces in a single Wimbledon. In 2008, the tennis pro served 57 aces which tied Alexandra Stevenson. In 2010, she steam rolled 89 aces to the title. In 2012, it only took a measly 102 aces to shatter her own incredible record. In a sports world filled with controversy, whether it be the A-Roid steroid saga, the NFL domestic violence controversies or just the fact that women athletes receive only a fraction of golden bouquets they deserve, William’s legacy has been forged by her striking and dominant performances on the clay courts.
In 1999, she won the U.S. Open Women’s Singles title and became the first black woman to win a Grand Slam since Althea Gibson in 1958, a remarkable leap above the net that has made Williams a cultural and socially relevant icon. Numbers do not lie, and the dominance of Williams throughout her glorious career remains true. She is the top seed and the must see at every tennis venue, from the courts at Wimbledon to the public parks in New York. Next on the menu for the five time Wimbledon Champion is her arch rival Maria Sharapova, this Thursday in the semifinals. Williams beat Sharapova this year in the Australian Open Final. Sharapova will not only be competing at Wimbledon, she will be the next guest of the Serena Slam.
Commentary by Phillip Hernandez
ESPN News: Serena Slam hopes intact after Williams drops Victoria Azarenka
ESPNW.: 10 Serena Williams Wimbledon Facts
USA Today: Serena Williams battles past Victoria Azarenka into Wimbledon Semis
Photo Courtesy of Yann Caradec’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License