No one at the top of women’s tennis played less matches than Serena Williams last year who heads to Melbourne ranked at a credible No.9 in the world.
Despite playing less tennis than all in the top 15 last year no one won more matches at a major than the 23 time Grand Slam champion and added tournaments will help that pursuit for 24.
I’m in that band of, it doesn’t matter if Serena gets No.24 or not as it won’t define who is a better role-model in tennis between her and Margaret Court there’s much more to it than numbers. Anyway to entertain the hunt for 24 it will help.
It was a big talking point during the 2019 season especially in the early parts that Serena wasn’t playing enough and then when she did play little injuries came up.
After Wimbledon there was something that clicked and more tournaments and performances against top players were needed.
More tournaments were added and it has helped her going forward. The way she played in New York was fantastic but didn’t end how she would have liked. She finished her season by saying “Serena didn’t show up” well she has so far in 2020.
Her season began with quite the extensive training camp with her coach Patrick and some others involved including Coco Gauff, Victoria Azarenka and Holger Rune which involved some karaoke and boxing with Mike Tyson.
Coming and winning in Auckland took a lot from Serena. Throughout her career she had picked up 100 titles but 101 felt special as she looked up in the air said the word “finally”. Even someone who has won it all still faces pressure and nerves.
What also impressed me about Auckland was the fact she played everyday as she teamed up with Wozniacki in the doubles and maintained a high level of tennis throughout.
Going into Melbourne, it will be tricky but one match at a time will be the message from Serena and her camp. There will be pressure but I’m in that camp of it doesn’t matter and she has achieved way more anyway.
Her first opponent is teenager Anastasia Potapova who saw off Angie Kerber at Roland Garros last year.