Serena against Serena

At about 39 years old, the six-time US Open champion is chasing an elusive 24th Grand Slam and this Saturday she plays against Sloane Stephens.

Serena-against-Serena

Serena Williams, who will blow 39 candles on September 26, liquidated the Russian Margarita Gasparyan (6-2 and 6-4) on Thursday by asserting her six titles at Flushing Meadows and this Saturday she will face another in the third round champion, Sloane Stephens (27 years old and who lifted the title in 2017). A major obstacle in his ninth attempt to achieve a 24th Grand Slam. A Championships that would equal him with the Australian Margaret Court and would leave him at the gates of the absolute record ... But time passes.

"I feel that every day I undertake a new journey ... and I feel very good at the moment, I think I am going in the right direction in this US Open", reflects Serena, who was a mother in 2018, she missed four Grand Slams to care for her little girl Alexis Olympia and has since failed in four finals. On the court Arthur Ashe fell in 2018 (with a scandal after insulting the referee Carlos Ramos) against Naomi Osaka and in 2019 against Bianca Andreescu. He had New York at his feet. But she ended up exhausted.

"The only thing that makes me nervous is myself. There is a lot of pressure regarding my results and everyone believes that I am in a unique position to win a tournament like this again. I am at a time in my life that I don't care if I lose twenty points in a row if I feel that I am happy. I am 38 years old and I am playing tennis normally. That is why I say that my main enemy is myself, "he said at a press conference. Although his physique does not overwhelm as before, when he passed the roller and seemed invincible, his power is still unbalanced if the head is with him. In the third round, she will face Stephens (5-1 in the face to face for the veteran), another African American who has had her mirror in Serena.

This US Open, with no public to cheer, began with the resignation of six top-ten, and the number one seed, Karolina Pliskova, has already fallen by the wayside. Therefore, for the now number 8 in the world it is a unique opportunity. Serena, who is not inside the two official hotels for players but in a house rented with permission from the US Open, in a particular and more comfortable bubble, is reducing opportunities as she removes pages from the calendar. "I've been trapped for a while trying to win one more Grand Slam. But it's a matter of pride," she warns. There is plenty of that.



Photos from as.com
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