The Best Player in History

Serena Williams has won more Grand Slams (23) than the male tennis player with more titles Roger Federer (20). (Michel Euler / AP)

With 39 Grand Slam titles, Serena Williams is the tennis player who has longer been and stayed number one in the world ranking

One of Roland Garros greatest stars this year is undoubtedly Serena Williams. After two years without off the courts, the American tennis player comes back to the tournament that she has won three times, in the years 2002, 2013 and 2015.

In 2017, Serena Williams retired momentarily to marry Alexis Ohanian, founder of the internet platform Reddit, and be a mother to a girl, Alexis Olympia. At that time, Serena was number 1 worldwide.

Now, at 36, she is back to continue making history. And, with 23 individual Grand Slam titles, Serena just needs another Grand Slam title to match the Australian Margaret Court, who currently holds the record with 24 titles.

Serena Williams is considered the best tennis player in the world thanks to her great physical and mental strength. She was the first tennis player to overcome the 300 weeks as number one in the WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) world ranking.

Serena has succeeded alone, but also next to her older sister: Venus Williams, together they form an unbeatable couple. Both of them together hold eight Olympic medals in doubles.

Miss you. Hurry back @venuswilliams

A post shared by Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) on

The Williams sisters have become world icons, but their beginnings in the tennis world were not easy. Venus and Serena were born in a very humble family in Saginaw, Michigan (United States), and had to work very hard to make a living in sports.

Her father got them both into the world of tennis and was her first and demanding coach. Venus first started and Serena, fascinated by the sport that her older sister was playing, soon began to train and show her talent for tennis.

In 1991, when they had already won a few competitions, their father decided to leave them in the hands of a professional trainer and talent builder, Rick Macci, who ended up bringing the Williams sisters to stardom. Serena entered the professional circuit in 1995, one year after her sister Venus.

In those years, they used to juggle their tough professional training as well as their training at the exclusive The Dirtwoon Academy in Lake Placid, where only up to 30 students can attend. There, Serena graduated with honours at the same time as she started to stand out in professional tennis.

In 1999, Serena began to stand out ahead of her sister winning the US Open, her first Grand Slam title. That same year, the Williams sisters entered the Top Ten and soon after won Roland Garros and the Federation Cup (the female equivalent of the Davis Cup).

Serena became number one in the ranking of the Women’s Tennis Association on July 8, 2002, after beating her own sister in Wimbledon.

Since then, Serena’s career has been full of wins. She has won 39 Grand Slam titles: 23 singles, 14 in women’s doubles (next to Venus) and 2 in mixed doubles (along with Max Mirnyi).

Serena is also the only tennis player who has completed the Golden Slam (winning the four Slams and an Olympic medal all in the same year) in the two modalities, singles and doubles.

Today, at Roland Garros, Serena can continue to make history.

Translated by Chaplin’s Languages | Find out more in Junior Report

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