Tennis: Celebrate Serena
Serena Williams won the year-end WTA Finals on
Sunday, avenging one of the worst losses of her
career to defeat Simona Halep 6-3, 6-0. The 33-
year-old American had already clinched the year-
end No. 1 ranking earlier in the tournament and
finishes her 2014 with seven tournament titles,
which included a third-straight U.S. Open.
The successes are undeniable: Serena Williams won a
Grand Slam and the year-end WTA Finals. Her
seven tournament wins were the third most she’s
ever had in a single season. Overall, Serena has been No. 1 for 97
consecutive weeks, dating all the way back to Feb.
18, 2013. If anyone else wins WTA Player of the
Year honors, it will be a travesty.
Only Serena can make
great years feel like disappointments because of
her past heights. Heck, any season would pale in
comparison to Serena’s historic 2013, when she won
two Slams and 11 titles, or Hiher 2003, when she won
three majors and eight titles.
If you want to say the early-round failures at the
Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon
overshadow the peaks of 2014, I won’t argue. But
I’d counter by saying Serena Williams is in legacy
mode. A loss in the finals of Wimbledon is clearly
better than a loss in the third round, but when
you’ve won a dozen-and-a-half Slams, the only
metric that counts is victories. If you come up
short, it doesn’t matter how short you are.
If you still don’t agree, hopefully this should do it:
Serena is now 33 years old. Before her, the oldest
No. 1 was Chris Evert, who was a few weeks shy of
turning 31 in her final week atop the rankings.
For the umpteenth time in her career, Serena Williams
is doing things the tennis world has never seen before. Celebrate it.