It has been a long time since we last saw Serena Williams on a tennis court. During the first round of Wimbledon 2021, the American champion injured her knee following a fall and since then she has never returned to action.
Over the past few years, the former world number 1 has been desperately searching for that 24th Grand Slam that would allow him to equal Margaret Court's record. Despite having missed the mark on more than one occasion, her latest major triumph remains at the 2017 Australian Open.
Serena, who has just turned 40, has decided to focus only on the majors in this final part of her career. career. The same can be said for Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, who have 'refined' their programming to perform at their best in the four most important tournaments on the calendar.
The Big 3 of the ATP circuit are currently tied with 20 Slams each. Within the podcast 'The GOAT-Serena', WTA legend Martina Navratilova illustrated how the attention of tennis players (men and women) has shifted too much to the majors in recent years.
Navratilova on the Big 3
“It’s no coincidence that right now we have the four people that won the most titles, other than Steffi Graf, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Serena Williams because that’s all tennis has become is about the majors.
The other tournaments are basically played practice,” said Navratilova in the podcast. Navratilova holds the most Grand Slam titles if doubles, mixed doubles, and singles titles are included. She discussed how things were different when she was on the tour and how tennis has now become centered around the Majors.
“You know, I would play between 7-8 matches every season- singles, and then of course, I would play doubles and everything as well. So the mentality was different, and then, of course, the tour was huge. The tour was bigger prize money than the majors,” added the 18-time Grand Slam champion.
Following his quarter-final exit at Wimbledon this year, Roger Federer spoke to Jonathan Heaf of the GQ Magazine about a number of topics, including his campaign at SW19 and how he has modified his training regimen with age.
"The standing ovation I received there this year was certainly a special one. When I left the court, I could feel the crowd’s love and their support," Federer said. "I'm actually very grateful, very happy I was just able to play.
I mean, my last year and a half, it's been really difficult. It's been hard with the double knee surgery I had last year and rehab was really slow. And, look, in some ways I wish I would have been in better shape for Wimbledon this year," Federer lamented.