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Women’s Sport: The top 10 defining moments of Serena Williams career so far



The top 10 defining moments of Serena Williams career so far

Serena Williams is the name most synonymous with Women’s Sport- the most successful female tennis player of the modern era, the most prize money of any woman in the modern era and undoubtedly one of the finest athletes of any era in any sport full stop.

Her career has been so illustrious, that to pick merely 10 defining moments has proved rather troublesome. In truth, Serena’s list of achievements and records are so vast, there is an entire Wikipedia page dedicated to this specifically. Nonetheless, from Melbourne to motherhood to meltdowns, here is our list of the 10 moments that have shaped Serena Williams’ tennis career so far.

1. Her first Grand-Slam Win 1999

1999 had proven a mixed year for Serena up until the U.S Open. The first half of the calendar had seen Williams climb into the top 10 of the rankings for the first time, but defeat in the third round of the French Open and withdrawal from Wimbledon through injury had set the tone for an underwhelming season. This changed, however, when Williams stormed to the U.S Open title, defeating defending champion Lindsay Davenport, Kim Clijsters and Martina Hingis in the final to become only the second African-American woman to win a singles Grand-Slam. To add to the enormity of the achievement, Williams also won the doubles tournament at Flushing Meadows that very same year.

2. The All-Williams Final

The Williams sisters rivalry is one of the most fascinating in the whole of sport. 30 singles Grand-Slams between them, they have met one another in nine major finals in total. Whilst Serena has won seven of these meetings, their first encounter in a major final came in 2001 at the U.S Open where Venus won the bragging rights. This was the first time two sisters had met in a slam-final and was met with widespread media attention and worldwide anticipation. Venus had won three of the last five majors, but could her younger sister topple her on the grandest stage? It proved otherwise that night, but from that point onwards, it was Serena who had the upper hand.

3. The Serena Slam 2002-2003

The Serena Slam was the name dubbed by the press following Serena’s four consecutive Grand Slam titles, starting with the 2002 French Open, through to the 2003 Australian Open. The most remarkable part about this feat was that all her victories in these respective finals came against her sister Venus. 2002 was also remarkable for Serena in that she finished the year as the World number one, the first African-American to do this since Althea Gibson in 1958.

4. The U.S Open 2004

Serena was the golden girl in tennis by 2004. She had completed the career Grand Slam, held the world number one ranking and was evidently on the path to greatness. The 2004 U.S Open proved, however, that she was not invincible and not immune to her fair share of controversy either. During her quarter-final against Jennifer Capriati, a number of line calls went against Williams which led to a confrontation with line judge Mariana Alves. Williams lost the match, and Alves would not officiate for the rest of the tournament.

5. Return to form 2007

For all her success at the start of her career, the period of 2004-2007 was a tough one for Williams. By the time she reached the 2007 Australian Open, she had fallen outside the top 100, having sat out five of the previous 13 major tournaments. Persistent injuries had also been a problem and Wiliams was supposedly told by Nike that they would consider dropping her unless her performances stepped up. They needn’t worry though, as Williams overcame a tough draw to topple Maria Sharapova in straight sets in the final. This was not only a defining moment in Serena’s resurgence to the top but also revenge for the loss Sharapova had inflicted on Williams in 2004.

6. That foot fault 2009

More controversy at the U.S Open arose when Williams was deemed to have foot-faulted by the umpire in her semi-final encounter with Kim Klijsters. This resulted in a foot fault which ended the match and caused Serena to launch a foul-mouthed tirade at the umpire. She was fined over $80,000 for her outburst and has conceded in years gone by that she used to have a real temper.

7. Olympic singles Gold

Serena had won virtually everything there was to win by 2012. Singles Grand-Slams, doubles Grand-Slams, tour finals. The only honour to allude to her at this point was the Olympic singles Gold medal. In 2012 though, Williams duly completed the career Golden Slam by dispatching her arch-rival Maria Sharapova 6-0 6-1 on centre-court at Wimbledon.

8. The Australian Open 2017

In 2017, Serena won her seventh Australian Open by defeating her sister Venus, the last encounter between the two in a major final. This was her 23rd Grand-Slam in total and her latest as well, leaving her just one short of the all-time record. The most remarkable thing about this achievement was her announcement on April 19th 2017 that she was 20 weeks pregnant. As the congratulations poured in, it dawned on people that this meant she must’ve been at least eight weeks pregnant during her Australian Open triumph.

9. U.S Open Meltdown 2018

Williams’ history of outbursts at the U.S Open continued in 2018, during her final against Naomi Osaka. After Williams received a code violation for receiving coaching and then a penalty point for racquet abuse, Serena called the umpire a “liar” and a “thief.” She has subsequently docked a game and accused the umpire of sexism, affirming that a man would never have received such treatment in the same circumstances. The ITF in response to the accusations, supported chair umpire, Carlos Ramos, claiming he acted within the guidelines of the law, however many were quick to support Serena and commend her courageous comments on social media.

10. Auckland Open 2020

After losing multiple slam-finals since her return after pregnancy, Williams finally won her first title since becoming a mother this year when she defeated Jessica Pegula in the final of the Auckland Open. By winning a tournament in 2020, Serena also created history by becoming the first woman to win a professional tennis tournament in four separate decades- the 1990’s, 2000’s, 2010’s and now the 2020’s.

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Roger Federer after early Wimbledon loss – ‘I’m extremely down, it was quite bad’



Roger Federer made a breakthrough run at Wimbledon 2001, beating the seven-time champion Pete Sampras in the fourth round before falling in the quarters to Tim Henman in four tight sets. Twelve months later, the Swiss returned at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club as the top-10 player and one of the title favorites, hoping to go further than a year ago and fight for the trophy.

Nonetheless, the 2002 Wimbledon campaign turned out to be a rather quick and unsuccessful one for Federer, losing to an 18-year-old Mario Ancic 6-3, 7-6, 6-3 on June 25. In his first Major match (he was the runner-up at the junior event in 2000), the Croat ranked 154th qualified for the main draw as one of the youngest players in the field, entering only the second ATP event after Miami in March.

The defending champion Goran Ivanisevic was not in the draw, and another hard-hitting player from Split was there to replace him in style, firing one booming serve after another to keep Federer without any rhythm, with his return working better than Roger’s to earn the triumph.

Ancic needed an hour and 40 minutes to take down the most prominent youngster at that moment, repelling five out of six break chances and stealing Roger’s serve on three occasions to notch straight-sets triumph, his first on the ATP level!

In 2002, Roger Federer suffered a heavy loss to Mario Ancic at Wimbledon R1.
Ancic was the youngest player to make a winning Wimbledon Centre Court debut since Bjorn Borg in distant 1973, drawing only positive vibes from the big scene and delivering a barrage of aggressive and attacking strokes to leave Roger behind!

The Croat kicked off the encounter in the best way, breaking Federer twice in the opening set to take it 6-3 in just 29 minutes. There were no breaks in set number two, and Mario won the tie break 7-2, playing better when it mattered the most and sealing Federer’s fate with a break in the third set’s fourth game.

“I’m still looking for reasons why I played so bad; I’m down right now, and it’s quite normal after such a loss. I expected much more than coming here and losing in straight sets; I’m disappointed, and I haven’t got any words at the moment.

I knew Mario was young but not much more; I tried to get some information from other players as many of them hit with him, unlike me. Besides that information, I couldn’t figure out his game today. I let him play well today, and I’m down about my performance; it was quite bad.

I mean, I had my chances in the second set and missed them all. I had the break in the first but couldn’t take my chances today. I was 40-0 up on the return once in the second set, and that was my only big chance which I didn’t seize.

Usually, I prefer to be in a favored role. I still think Arazi was a tough opponent at the French Open. Here, I should have won this match. I was a big favorite over Ancic, but he played well today. It is very disappointing to lose back-to-back first round at Majors. I’m looking for reasons why but I have time to figure that out, so we’ll see,” Roger Federer said.

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Naomi Osaka: “My biggest fear is to disappoint people”



Naomi Osaka failed to win the 2021 Miami Open, after resounding quarter-final defeat to Maria Sakkari. However, we know that Naomi is definitely the tennis player of the moment. Winner of the last Australian Open, for a total of 4 Slam titles, the number 2 of the Japanese world has shown all her sensitivity and strength, becoming a bulwark in the movements in defense against discrimination and racism: she is a great fighter for social equality.

Yet Naomi, in one of her latest interviews, confessed what her greatest fear is. She said “My biggest fear is to disappoint people.” Considering her activities on and off the pitch, the young Japanese girl has only gained enormous love and following from all over the world.

Osaka also said: “Nothing can surpass a simple bowl of vanilla ice cream in my eyes. I love cooking. I got to experience it during the quarantine and it made me love it even more. One of my favorite memories is about Arthur Ashe Stadium.

of New York. There’s something about being in New York, it’s just a great vibe.”

Latests on Naomi Osaka
On the last days, on Twitter, she condemned the recent hate crimes against Asian Americans. She wrote: “If people loved Asian people as much as they love bubble tea, anime, mochi, sushi, matcha etc.

Imagine profiting / enjoying things that come from a culture and then attacking / diminishing the ethnic group that created it.” On Twitter we can read comments by users who said: “Think about how many people love hip hop culture, and gentrifying communities, Eating ethnic food and so on,” or also: “Hate loves to take.”

Following the first Australian success, on 28 January 2019 it also reached the first place in the world ranking for the first time. Naomi was the first ever Japanese athlete to win a Grand Slam title, the third in the Open Era to qualify for the WTA Finals in 2018 and the first Asian ever to reach the top of the WTA rankings.

Naomi and Ashleigh Barty are fighting for the WTA world no.1. Barty has been world no.1 since September 2019, for 69 weeks, 62 of which are consecutive. Over the course of her career she has won seven WTA titles out of eleven finals played, four of which are Grand Slam tournaments: she boasts the victory of two US Open in 2018 and 2020 and two Australian Open in 2019 and 2021.

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Rafael Nadal: ‘If my uncle had not introduced me to tennis…’



Spaniard Rafael Nadal and Swiss Roger Federer, respectively in 3rd and 7th place in the latest ATP rankings, are the two players with the most career Grand Slam trophies (20). Followed by Serbian Novak Djokovic, current world number one, stopped at 18 with the last title achieved at the Australian Open 2021.

The Big 3, as they have been called over the years, have all decided to skip the Masters appointment 1000 of Miami, together with Andy Murray, Dominic Thiem, Stan Wawrinka and Gael Monfils. Finally, the surprising Polish Hubert Hurkacz triumphed in Florida, winner of players such as Denis Shapovalov, Milos Raonic, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrej Rublev, in addition to the success obtained in the final against our Jannik Sinner, certainly not at the best of his form.

In recent years, the world of social networks has acquired increasing importance, also used by numerous professional tennis players to share experiences on the Tour and be able to compare themselves with their fans, especially in a period like the current one marked by the Coronavirus emergency that has forced tournaments to go on stage without an audience, or at least with a small number of spectators.

Twitter is widely used, in which Rafa Nadal holds the record for the highest number of followers among tennis athletes: 15.7 million. In second place Federer, with about 12.7 million followers. Follows the American champion Serena Williams, the most followed tennis player on this social network with a figure that is around 10.8 million.

Rafael Nadal recently spoke at length about the people he considers to be the most instrumental figures during his playing career. The 20-time Major champion described the role played by his uncle and former coach Toni Nadal, as well as that of his parents, current coach Carlos Moya, Carlos Costa (manager) and Francisco Roig (assistant coach).

Rafael Nadal pays tribute to all the key members of his team
“Without all the people who have been by my side none of this (his success) would have been possible,” Rafael Nadal said. “That if my uncle had not introduced me to tennis or helped me decisively during practically my entire career, I would not be where I am.

That if my father and my mother had not been willing to accompany me to a place every weekend and not doing the things that maybe they had other options to do, maybe they had more fun.” According to Rafael Nadal, he might not have developed his perseverance and fighting spirit without the continuous support that he received.

“If I had not had the people who would have guided me on the right path, then perhaps I would not have had that spirit of perseverance, of overcoming,” the Spaniard continued. “I think I have been lucky to have the people by my side who have helped me

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