February 16, 2021
Serena Williams just did something truly unbelievable – even for Serena Williams.
That’s quite a claim when you consider that she already has 23 Grand Slams to her name.
But it’s true. Serena just surpassed herself.
She just improved her game.
Americans have always loved Serena. Now everyone should love her.
She just gained revenge for Wimbledon 2019. She beat Simona Halep 6-3, 6-3 to reach her fortieth Grand Slam semi-final.
Now there’s a chance for more revenge – against Naomi Osaka, the young woman who beat her in the US Open final a few years back.
Whatever happens next in Australia, something just became very clear.
Serena Williams can win Wimbledon 2021. She can make history at the All England Club.
So what has changed?
She just added phenomenal defence to her game and became an even better tennis player.
Maybe she will equal Margaret Court’s Grand Slam record at Wimbledon. Maybe she will beat it.
What we now know is that anything is possible in London.
What an occasion Wimbledon 2021 is going to be!
Serena feels so at home there. She has been so successful at Wimbledon.
Everyone in the USA must be so proud of their all-time-great tennis champion.
Americans will flock to Wimbledon to see her try to rewrite the tennis history books. It’s an irresistible opportunity.
But we can all cheer her and salute her now. You don’t have to be American to love her. Everyone should see something loveable about her.
Everyone who loves sport, who loves someone with the determination to defy time. To bounce back when the chips are down. We are all Team Serena.
Let’s remind ourselves of a few things. Serena Williams will be forty later this year. She has had a baby. She nearly died having her baby.
How on earth does anyone manage to get even better at any sport after all that? But Serena has done it.
Against Halep, there were countless times when the point should have been over. When the Romanian’s brilliance should have proved too much.
With superhuman footwork, stretches and reaches that belong to a teenager, Serena somehow stayed alive.
It was staggering to watch.
Williams has always been aggressive. She has always had a fearsome serve and a stunning forehand.
Maybe she wasn’t always quite as mobile as some of the other greats. But now even that has changed.
Serena’s defensive movement belongs to a woman half her age.
Where did it come from? She was asked the question after the Halep victory. Surely she must have worked on it recently?
She replied: ‘Not particularly. Although last year my coach Patrick did say I had to be better on defence. Sometimes I’m just getting points. Getting balls. I can do it and that’s exciting.’
Now she can back up that intimidating pre-match look once more. The one that seemed to penetrate Halep’s soul and ask: ‘Do you really think you’re going to beat me again? Do you really think I will let you?’
The new Serena needn’t fear anyone. She needn’t fear Naomi Osaka either.
There is a marvellous respect there. Serena said: ‘She’s such a strong person on the court and so inspirational off the court and that’s really cool. I’ve been watching her and I’m sure she has been watching me. It’s just another opportunity for me to do my best.’
If she can defend like she did against Halep, anything is possible.
We just can’t wait to welcome Serena at Wimbledon 2021.
We doubt she will ever have felt more loved.
Serena has overcome adversity. She has defied time. She has become an even better tennis player.
How is that possible? We don’t really know. It shouldn’t be possible.
That’s why we are all Serena Williams fans now.