“I Can Pass the Test at the Open”: Serena Williams Issues Stern Warning Ahead of US Open 2020

Published 08/25/2020, 12:52 AM EDT


The 23-time Grand slam champion Serena Williams had a tricky start to her campaign at the Western and Southern Open 2020. The former World No.1 defeated the Dutch qualifier Arantxa Rus 7-6(6) 3-6 7-6(0) in the Round of 32.

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Serena Williams had received a bye in the first round, was down a set point in the first set before clawing back to win the first set tiebreak. Arantxa Rus fought hard in the second set and won it comfortably by breaking Williams multiple times.

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“Now I feel like I have passed that test, and now I can pass the test at the Open, playing Ashe Stadium,” Serena said in her post-match press conference.

During the third set, Williams managed to get a 5-2 lead but Arantxa Rus pushed the deciding set to the tiebreaker by winning four straight games. The American played exceptionally well in the third set tiebreak and won it without losing a single point.

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As the match was played without spectators, Williams was asked about the experience during the post-match interview. “At one point I was pumping my fist and saying, ‘Come on!’ I had a crowd in my head or something! It was actually funny to me. I don’t know. For me, it was like there was a crowd there.” said Serena.

The two-time Western and Southern champion Serena Williams played at the event after a hiatus of two years. Despite almost a 3 hour match on Monday, Serena acknowledged that she is physically fit and tennis is all about mental strength.

The American is scheduled to face the 13th seeded Maria Sakkari in the third-round match. The duo will play each other for the very first time, Sakkari has won both her previous two rounds in straight sets and has shown great control from the baseline.

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As the US Open 2020 starts next week, winning at Cincinnati will be the perfect preparation for the six-time US Open champion Serena Williams.

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Kshitij Tayal

392 articles

Kshitij Tayal is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having played district-level tennis competitions, Kshitij is also a tenured journalist of the sport with over four years of experience. At EssentiallySports, he pens down some thought-provoking pieces on players and tournaments across the ATP and WTA.

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