The announcement of Serena Williams’ retirement left everyone speechless. Although it was not a bolt from the blue, the American's decision to hang up the racket generated reactions around the world. The former WTA number 1, who has played very little in the last two seasons, will say goodbye to the world of tennis after the US Open 2022.
Barring a sensational backlash in New York, Serena will not be able to match the all-time record of Slam of Margaret Court. “I love tennis, but the countdown has begun. There comes a time in life when we have to decide to move in a different direction.
I want to focus on being a mother and finally explore other sides of my personality. I will enjoy these last few weeks on the pitch as much as possible and then a new chapter of my life will begin ”- wrote Williams on Instagram.
Regardless of Margaret Court's record, they all agree in crowning Serena as the greatest ever. Speaking at Eurosport, Mats Wilander paid tribute to the 23-time Grand Slam champion.
Wilander praises Serena Williams
We were obviously looking forward to the tribute that Mats Wilander was going to pay to Serena Williams.
We were not disappointed. The Swede sums up in a few words the impact that the American has had on the tennis world. “She pushed the boundaries of the sport and brought tennis into the living rooms of people who wouldn't normally watch the sport.
Serena Williams' departure from professional tennis will be a sad day, as she has given so much to tennis. Serena showed that she was one of the greatest athletes of all time, but she also showed that she was human, and that is where our passion and admiration for Serena Williams begins."
Serena Williams is rightly considered one of the greatest players of all time. Knowing her mastery over the sport, it is needless to say that a player facing Serena ought to have self-doubts about winning. Especially in the case of playing her in the finals of a grand slam.
Conversing with the 2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka, Ellen started by questioning whether she thought of having a chance to beat Serena in the finals. Being a newbie to limelight, the hesitation of an interview was clearly visible on Osaka’s face.
However, the same didn’t seem to reflect in her answer. Replying to Ellen, Osaka said, “I wouldn’t play a match without thinking I had a chance. In the back of my mind I thought so”.