All the figures add up for Serena
Monday 28 June 2004
Serena Williams doesn't do maths. When asked yesterday what she thought she might be doing 20 years hence, she calculated she would be aged 32 instead of 42.
For the record, she added that, in 20 years' time, aged 32, she hoped to be running a successful clothing company, and be an established movie star, and "hopefully have a few little Serenas running around - two Serenas".
The only other relevant numbers for her yesterday were two and three. Two was the number of sets she needed to brush aside Spain's Magui Serna, 6-4, 6-0. Williams's brutal power and deceptively swift movement were the familiar tools in her victory.
Three is the number of consecutive Wimbledon singles titles Serena will have won if she can win four more matches here this fortnight. Only two other women, Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf, have completed a hat-trick in the open era.
Serena's next hurdle will be either France's Tatiana Golovin or Switzerland's Emmanuelle Gagliardi, who were level in the third set of their third-round match last night when rain stopped play.
Neither will have a prayer on the champion's form yesterday, of which she gave an accurate assessment. "I started adding the spin and playing grass court tennis instead of clay court or hard court," she said. "I was also beginning to come to the net a bit more. I was pretty excited about it."
She also revealed that her father, Richard, had advised her to take some pace off her serve in the hope of improving its accuracy. "He said don't hit them 120mph if you can hit 110. For the first time in 10 years I decided, OK, I'm only gonna hit 110 and just place it, and it worked every time."
Working all the time was a recurring theme. Williams was asked if she thought that her activities away from tennis were damaging her game. The question is being increasingly asked, most recently by Navratilova.
"I think I had as many outside interests before [when dominating the Grand Slams through most of 2002 and 2003] but I was afraid to act on them," Serena said in her defence. "And I was afraid of how I would be perceived if I acted on them. But once I got over that fear I realised my tennis career is only going to last so long. I don't want to be 32 and not know exactly what's gonna happen. I want my future planned."
Manchester United's best XI of the season so far: No place for Angel Di Maria or Juan Mata
Which player sells the most shirts in the Premier League?
WrestleMania 31 results: Seth Rollins stuns WWE as he cashes in Money in the Bank contract to claim title from Brock Lesnar
Chelsea's best XI of the season so far: Petr Cech has been better than Thibaut Courtois
Chelsea's Eden Hazard, Arsenal's Mesut Ozil and Manchester City's Jesus Navas are the three best attacking midfielders in Europe in 2015
- 1 Replica Back to the Future Hoverboard released
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Brixton squat flats now costing up to £3k per month show how out of control rent is in London
- 4 A new (old) cure for MRSA? Revolting recipe from the Dark Ages may be key to defeat infection
- 5 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans