Serena Williams made her 2020 US Open debut on Tuesday and received towards Kristie Ahn within the first spherical 7-5, 6-3. This grew her tally of US Open singles match wins to 102, probably the most of any tennis participant within the event’s historical past. Williams tied the file held by Chris Evert eventually yr’s US Open semifinals. One of the perfect elements of this new file? Williams achieved it on daughter Olympia’s birthday!
Williams, who turns 39 this month and has six US Open titles below her belt, received her first US Open match in 1998 — although it wasn’t till the yr after that she obtained her first Grand Slam victory on the US Open. In a court docket interview after the first-round match on Tuesday, she mentioned she was proud of how she fought for each level, including that she received her “Serena focus” again.
“It has been years, for the reason that ’90s, since I received a match in straight units!” Williams admitted. “It felt actually good. I used to be like, ‘Serena, simply be Serena and shut it out,’ and I do know I can do this, so it felt actually good.” Taking part in with out followers was quiet, she famous, however the environment nonetheless felt like a Grand Slam to her. “I am nonetheless as, I feel, passionate and intense on the market.”
Williams continued, “I’ve all the time mentioned, ‘You may’t do it ceaselessly,’ despite the fact that I’ve sort of been doing it simply over ceaselessly. One of lately, it may finish, and I simply love being out right here.” She is chasing her 24th Grand Slam singles win, which might tie Margaret Court docket’s general file. Williams is scheduled to compete within the second spherical on Thursday — and with every win she might lock down, she is going to proceed to beat the US Open match-winning file she set this week.
Williams’s older sister Venus, the oldest participant on the 2020 US Open card, misplaced her first-round match with Williams within the crowd. Nonetheless, she reached the most US Open appearances with 22. Serena mentioned after her personal match that each sisters by no means thought they’d nonetheless be enjoying over twenty years since their professional tennis careers started. “It is sort of cool now,” she said, “we’re half of the in crowd by enjoying at our age.”