Serena Williams will already be having dreams of glory: perhaps never, like this year at the Australian Open 2021, she has the most concrete chance to win the long-dreamed 24ism Grand Slam and equal Margaret Smith's record, but the obstacles for her will be many, and she he will have to do her utmost to ensure that her dream does not become a nightmare.
The opponents? Many, some in excellent shape, as seen in the early tournaments in Melbourne. Serena is in great shape, despite the small physical problem that prevented her from playing the semifinal of the Yarra Valley Classic against Ashleigh Barty, but that will not affect her presence at the Happy Slam.
Who will be her most formidable opponents? Naomi Osaka and Ashleigh Barty, but also Garbine Muguruza and Simona Halep. The world number one will have a first match against Montenegrin Danka Kovinic and then she most likely face Daria Gavrilova.
Australian Open 2021 women's singles preview
After a (potential) round with wild card Inglis, Barty could have Sevastova, Kenin and Konta lined up. Lots of traffic in the same segment of draw with Viktoria Azarenka and Elina Svitolina but also with Maria Sakkari and Cori Gauff.
Bianca Andreescu immediately on a collision course with the insidious Mihaela Buzarnescu, Petra Kvitova with Minnen, Garbine Muguruza with Gasparyan, Simona Halep with Pavlyuchenkova. Angelique Kerber also orbits in the same portion of draw.
In the last segment of the scoreboard we find Iga Swiatek, Serena Williams and obviously Simona Halep. The American will have the first round against Laura Siegemund, the Polish against Arantxa Rus, the Romanian against the wild card Carbera.
Definitely complicated path for the world number two, who could even have Veronika Kudermetova before Swiatek in the fourth round. The chances of winning are the same for at least five of the many protagonists of this Australian Open.
Serena Williams, Simona Halep, Naomi Osaka, Ashleigh Braty and (perhaps) Garbine Muguruza will start the Happy Slam with, more or less, the same percentages. Without forgetting fearsome opponents such as Petra Kvitova, Iga Swiatek, Sofia Kenin, Karolina Pliskova, Elina Svitolina and Angelique Kerber.
And all the others. For an uncertain and potentially spectacular Australian Open. Australian Open 2021 women's singles preview Serena Williams 20% Naomi Osaka 20% Ashleigh Barty 20% Simona Halep 20% Garbine Muguruza 20% Outsiders: Maria Sakkari and Cori Gauff