With three trophies from her last three major tournaments in the bag, it’s hard not to think about the Grand Slam as a real possibility for Serena Williams this season.
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Winning all four majors in one season is arguably the toughest achievement in tennis and only three players have managed to achieve it in the Open Era (which started in 1968) – Rod Laver, Margaret Court and Steffi Graf.
After claiming her 20th major trophy in Paris on Saturday to add to the Australian Open crown she captured in Melbourne last January, Williams is now halfway to a Grand Slam and could become the first player since Graf in 1988 to win all four in the same year.
Serena just powered through a week-long flu to win a Grand Slam on her weakest surface at the age of 33. The prior sentence is impossible.
— Tomás Ríos (@TheTomasRios) June 6, 2015
The 33-year-old, who is also chasing Graf’s Open Era record of 22 majors, has now shifted her attentions to Wimbledon – a tournament she has won five times but where she has also suffered surprise early exits in the past two years (third round in 2014, fourth round in 2013).
With the expectation of a Grand Slam gathering steam, Williams joked that she’d like Novak Djokovic to try and take some of the heat off her.
“It’s rare, no one’s done it since Steffi. Rod Laver did it. I’m hoping Djokovic will win so I’m not the only one with this pressure on me. We’re in this together, brother,” Williams said after her win in Paris.
“So we’ll see. I don’t want people asking me all these questions. I’m telling you, at Wimbledon the monkey is off my back because I have not done well there in a couple of years considering how well I have done there for so many years.”
If Williams does indeed win Wimbledon then the US Open in September could end up being the most monumental tournament of her career where she would be up for not just the Grand Slam but a 22nd major title that would tie her with Graf’s record.
“We shouldn’t think about it now. Everything is possible. Of course I care about the 23rd (slam). We’re a step closer for sure but we’re still far,” said Patrick Mouratoglou, Williams’ coach.
“For me it’s a goal because it would be something huge but we’re still far. I think it’s too early to think about it. We should think about the next Grand Slam and the next match in the next Grand Slam first.”
Still, the Frenchman insists nothing is impossible.
“Why not (win the Grand Slam)? She’s won two, so why not? It’s probably the most difficult thing to do in tennis, so that would be something totally incredible. But why not believe it’s possible? Of course it is. It’s going to be very difficult but it’s possible,” added Mouratoglou.
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