Six of the top-8 WTA players will not compete at the US Open, opening the door for others to seek the title. The 23-time Major winner Serena Williams is the third seed, battling for the seventh US Open crown after losing finals in 2018 and 2019.
At the Australian Open 2017, Serena won her 23rd and so far the last Major title, giving her everything to lift the elusive 24th that would tie her with Margaret Court. Serena had spent five weeks at home with her family between March and August during the coronavirus, not wanting to risk anything after health issues she had in the past.
Straying in a private home with her husband and daughter in New York, Serena takes all the organizers' health measures, trying to keep the focus on tennis as much as possible. In her previous three tournaments this season, Serena won the Auckland title before experiencing the Australian Open's third-round exit.
Before the break, her last matches came at the Fed Cup against Latvia, scoring one win and having to wait for six months to hit the court again. Returning to action in Lexington, Williams came from a set down against Bernarda Pera and her sister Venus to reach the quarters, losing to Shelby Rogers 1-6, 6-4, 7-6 after a great battle.
In her test matches ahead of the US Open in New York at Western & Southern Open, Serena prevailed against Arantxa Rus in the deciding tie break before experiencing a tough loss to Maria Sakkari, standing close to the finish line in set number two before losing ground in the decider.
Serena Williams is the third seed at the US Open, seeking the first title since 2014.
With no crowd to support her, Williams will face Kristie Ahn in the first round of the US Open, seeking the 102nd victory at her favorite Major and hoping to embrace another deep run, not losing before the semi-final since 2007!
Her first title in New York came in 1999, staying competitive for more than two decades and preparing to chase the seventh crown, the first since 2014. Asked about her goals, Serena said she is ready to battle for that 24th Major until she retires, not feeling satisfied with anything else.
After New York, she is prepared to come to Europe and compete at Roland Garros at the end of September, giving her best to prolong her career and fight for notable titles for at least one more year. "Obviously, I'm never satisfied; that's been the story of my career.
It's like I'll never be satisfied until I retire and I'm never going to stop. It's just my personality. Normally you feel a little more worn in, ready to get this final Slam over. But it's not even the final Slam any more, at least for this year. I don't know how to feel," Serena Williams said.