This court could not be more appropriate for a pioneer like Serena. It’s Arthur Ashe Court, named after a barrier-breaking Black tennis player, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, named after the woman who launched women’s tennis to new heights.
Serena has won this event six times. She has 23 major titles. That’s one short of the record held by Margaret Court, but any consideration that Court is ahead of Serena in the GOAT (Greatest of all Tennis, er, Time) conversation can’t be taken seriously. Serena (we’ll use the first name in part because she, like Madonna or Cher, is recognized best by that name and also because her sister, Venus Williams, is also in the stratosphere of the sport’s all-time best) has spent a couple of decades simply running people off the court.
And yet … this championship has eluded her since she won her third straight in 2014. She melted down in 2018 against then-unheralded Naomi Osaka. She lost the next year to Bianca Andreescu.
But great players have a way of putting together one more great run. Will this be it?
Good evening to all in the US, good morning to those on the other side of the globe, and good afternoon to those in between.
Thanks for checking in for the all-US matchup between 10th-seeded Taylor Fritz and Brandon Holt. Fritz should have the edge, of course, but … what? Oh, right.
Pity Fritz, Holt and fourth-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas, all of whom will be playing on the showcase courts at the US Open in a few minutes but might as well be playing in Guam. This is the Serena Williams show, with good reason. Every match here could be the last time we see a one-of-a-kind player on her biggest stage.
Beau will be here shortly, with the match due to start around 7.30pm local time (9.30am AEST/12.30am BST). Meanwhile, here’s a bit of pre-match reading:
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