'Serena Williams played great tennis until Australian Open semis,' says Mouratoglou

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'Serena Williams played great tennis until Australian Open semis,' says Mouratoglou

Serena Williams and Patrick Mouratoglou started working together in 2012, winning numerous titles and securing Serena's place among the greatest players in history. Serena claimed her 23rd Major title at the Australian Open 2017, making a break from tennis due to her pregnancy and returning the following spring.

Eager to chase that elusive 24th Major crown, Serena lost four Major finals at Wimbledon and the US Open in 2018 and 2019 and failed to make that last push and secure the title that she has been waiting for years. Following an injury at last year's Roland Garros in October, Williams recovered in time for the Australian Open this February and chased the eighth Melbourne crown.

Delivering her best tennis in the last couple of years, Serena ousted five rivals to reach the final four, including notable victories over Aryna Sabalenka and Simona Halep! Setting eyes on the trophy, Williams faced Naomi Osaka in a blockbuster clash and suffered a 6-3, 6-4 defeat, making too many errors and falling despite a good start.

Eager to give her best and claim that 24th Major title, Serena will compete in Paris and London in the next two months, making a slow return after staying away from the court for three months and working hard on her game.

After early exits in Rome and Parma, Serena is back on the practice court ahead of Roland Garros. Her coach Patrick Mouratoglou is confident about her chances, saying she didn't need much time to find her A-game ahead of the Australian Open and praising her level in the opening five matches.

Patrick Mouratoglou is confident about Serena Williams' upcoming tournaments.

"I think Serena lost because she wasn't ready. I don't know, but maybe it wasn't a good idea to go and play in Parma because her match in Rome showed many things that still needed to be worked on to compete at the highest level.

I think it's always interesting to play matches because it gives you a clear vision of where you are, so that was good in that way because we know what she still needs to accomplish to be ready for Roland Garros. I'm not worried in general because if she does the job, she will be ready.

It's just about doing the job. We have to go on the court, work, and day after day, I will see. To be completely honest with you, when I saw her before the Australian Open for preparation, I thought 'wow' - a lot of work to get ready.

But in a short period, Serena was able to hit great form. She played well, but unfortunately not through the whole tournament - only until the semi-finals. She played great tennis and moved well, and it didn't taker her too much time to get ready.

I'm never scared of the others, and I'm not going to start now. I respect many other players who are definitely good, and there is a lot of depth in the women's game. I've always said regarding Serena that it's all about her, and it's still all about her.

The question is, is she able or not to start a Major being in her top form and able to win? She was 100% ready in Australia, really prepared to win, but it didn't happen. We'll see how she is in the next couple of tournaments.

When she gets to the latter stages, the semi-finals and the final, how does she handle the situation, and can she play her best tennis? The last year she hasn't been able to play her best in the latter stages. First of all, when people tell her 'she can't,' it gives her extra motivation, so please tell Francesca Schiavone to say it louder so I can make sure Serena can hear it!

Secondly, she's been able to do things in her career that were in theory not possible because she has this belief that she can achieve anything, and that's such great strength," Patrick Mouratoglou said.