The announcement of Serena Williams’ imminent retirement left everyone speechless. Although it was not a bolt from the blue, the farewell of one of the greatest athletes of all time cannot leave you indifferent. The American legend, who has played very little in the last two seasons, will greet the world of tennis in New York.
The US Open will be her last tournament as a professional, as well as marking the end of an era. The former WTA number 1 has expressed a desire to spend more time with her family and to devote herself to other projects. Barring a sensational backlash in Flushing Meadows, Serena will not be able to match Margaret Court’s major record.
After losing to Belinda Bencic in Toronto, the 23-time Grand Slam champion has racked up just four games against Emma Raducanu in Cincinnati. The winner of the US Open 2021 won in just over an hour and will face Victoria Azarenka in the second round.
Through his Twitter profile, Brett Haber defended Williams’ choice to get back in the game at almost 41 years old.
Haber opens up on Serena
“There is NO indignity in Serena Williams losing as she approaches the finish line.
On the contrary, I find a certain courage in her willingness to confront her imperfection, as she gives fans one last chance to bear firsthand witness to her legend,” Haber wrote. During the post-match press conference after her first-round win over Serena Williams, Raducanu was asked about whom she wanted to play against that she didn’t have a chance to play with.
Replying to this question, Raducanu said, “I would say one person. I would love to play Simona, just because I think she all around is like, for me, all around the most complete player”. Further, she added, “She moves extremely well.
She’s aggressive. She can defend. She makes you work so hard for every point. Could be like a slow, painful, you know, like she gets you (smiling). But I think just to be able to feel that would be great”. Raducanu will face the former World Number 1, Victoria Azarenka, in the second round of the tournament.
It will be their maiden meeting on the WTA Tour. Their match will take place later today. Williams was sidelined for a year by a torn hamstring suffered last year at Wimbledon, and her late-career injuries have contributed to inconsistency on the court. She started the 2022 season at Wimbledon and this was just her fourth match of the season.