If you think Serena Williams is the best tennis player ever, you wouldn’t be the only one. She’s overcome the odds to be ranked at number one in the world eight different times between 2002 and 2017. She’s held the title of best in the world for a total of 319 weeks in her career. The sixth time she rose to number one she held the position for 186 weeks in a row, tying Steffi Graf who set the record before her.
What Is Her Playing Style?
Williams is a power player. She has a strong first and second serve that she uses to set the tone of a point. From the baseline she is unmatched in her in forceful groundstrokes. With a competent forehand and backhand it’s hard to find a weakness in her game.
Williams is considered to be a risky player because she consistently hits the ball so hard and goes for difficult placement. But she has proven both with her serves and with her ground game that she can be not only powerful but accurate.
Many players find it difficult to return her serves because of her aforementioned power and placement. In the 2012 Wimbledon tournament, she hit a record 102 aces. That was more than any player hit in the men’s tournament the same year.
Not only is she powerful and accurate but she has timing and poise as well. She does not crack under pressure but seems to rise to the occasion and perform even better. In the 2013 French Open she served three aces in the final game of the match. One of these serves was record at 123 mph.
Taking Time Off
Throughout her career, Williams has shown an amazing tenacity and hunger to win. In 2017, while she was eight weeks pregnant she won the Australian open, raising her Grand Slam titles total to 23. This put her one past Steffi Graf at 22. Not only did she win the Open but she was back at number one again.
But after the win she decided that it was time to take a break. After all, she was pregnant. In September of 2017 Williams gave birth to her daughter and was back out on the tennis court in the new year, starting with a doubles match with her sister Venus.
Everyone has their favorite Williams sister but the numbers show who is the better of the two. In 29 contests, Serena has beaten Venus 17 times. They have faced each other in Grand Slam finals on nine occasions. Serena has won seven of them. There is no doubt a healthy rivalry between the sisters but it’s clear that Serena has come out on top.
Off The Court
Williams has numerous endorsements such as Gatorade, Pepsi, and Beats by Dre. She is no doubt one of the most recognizable athletes around the world. Her aggressive style of play, her winning attitude, and impressive record have made her a fan favorite.
Williams has also spoken out about on social issues. Namely, she has taken to social media to show support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
On and off the court Serena Williams is deeply respected. She will no doubt go down as one of the greatest tennis players ever. But it would be foolish to assume her career will stop after tennis. She is a brand all to herself. In 2009 she even bought into the Miami Dolphins organization to be a part owner.
Williams is getting near to the end of her tennis career. When she is done on the court the tennis world will mourn the loss of one of its greatest players ever. She still has a few good years left and many more after her career is over to continue shaping the world.