MELBOURNE, Australia – Serena Williams made a big step toward winning the record 24th Grand Slam titles on Monday.
"It was a really intense game, some amazing points," Williams said during a TV interview in court. "I really had to raise my game. She is the first player in the world and has a reason. " Williams, 37, looked slow at the start of the match, losing the first game with unusual bad shooting and mistakes. But then he turned to jets, played with force and precision, and did not allow his Romanian opponent to find his usual rhythm. The first set ends in 20 minutes.
By the third set, the dots began to play with longer rallies, rather to the Bale Likes. Williams, however, broke in the middle of the last line.
Williams-Halep's game, played 15,000 people in the Rod Lavren Arena, was a rare case where the highest ranked player was seen as weaker. Callepe not only faced a huge opponent with 23 big titles, seven from Melbourne alone, but Williams had dominated his career by winning eight times and losing once.
Melbourne, as she won the title in 2017, shortly after learning that she was pregnant with her daughter, Olympia Ogunan, now. Williams made the Wimbledon finals last season and in the US Open, where he lost Japan's Naomi Osaka's final in the midst of controversy and accusations of sexism. (Osaka also advanced in Melbourne on Monday, defeating Anastasia Sevstova from Latvia, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.) Williams plays a limited schedule since birth, and now she ranks number 16.
In the quarterfinals, Williams will face Karolina Pliskova from the Czech Republic, who easily defeated Garbie Muguruza from Spain with 6-3, 6-1 to continue on Monday. will be her 24th Grand Slam title binding the Australian Margaret Court record. The court won its titles both in the amateur and the professional era, which began in 1968