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US OPEN

Serena Williams’ greatest tennis moments

Serena Williams is retiring and her tennis career was full of incredible feats and huge accomplishments. Let’s take a look back at the best.

Update:

Serena Williams announced her retirement from professional tennis ahead of the US Open. We take a look back at some of the best moments in the career of one of the best female tennis players the sport has ever seen.

1999 - Serena wins first Grand Slam title

When Serena Williams won her first Grand Slam at the US Open in 1999, she became just the second black woman to ever to do so and the first in 40 years after Althea Gibson in 1958. She won the title just one year after she started competing professionally. In the final, she played against then-world no. 1 Martina Hingis, who had beaten Serena’s sister Venus in the semis. Serena won in straight sets.

2002 - Serena makes it to No. 1 in WTA rankings for first time

In 2002, Williams beat her sister at Wimbledon, 7-6 (4), 6-3. Just a few days later, she appeared at No. 1 in the WTA rankings. She would stay there for 319 weeks, the third-longest of any player.

2003 - the first “Serena Slam”

In 2002, Williams won the French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open. She then went on to top it off with a win over her sister Venus at the Australian Open in January 2003, becoming just the fifth woman to hold all four major titles at once and the first since Steffi Graff in 1994. Thus the term “Serena Slam” came to be.

2007 - Australian Open comeback

After some very rough years, Serena made a dominant comeback at the Australian Open in 2007. After she’d won Wimbledon in 2003, she suffered a devastating knee injury that saw her out for the rest of the year. While she was recovering from that, she lost her older, half-sister Yetunde Price, who was shot and killed in their hometown in California. Williams suffered from a horrible depression in the following years as she mourned the loss and dealt with multiple injuries. That’s why when she returned to play in the Australian Open in 2007 and won it, the accomplishment was that much more meaningful. She didn’t slow down after that. She went on to win the US Open the next year and both the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2009.

2017 - Australian Open, most Grand Slam titles

Williams played in the Australian Open in 2017 and beat her sister, Venus in the finals. She didn’t lose a single set. She won her 23rd Grand Slam singles title, becoming the player with the most Grand Slam singles titles in the Open Era, breaking Steffi Graf’s previous record of 22. Even more impressive is that Williams won that tournament while two months pregnant with her daughter, Olympia.

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