That person is Serena Williams, all 31 years of her, who is not only in the finals at the U.S. Open, but in the finals on such a pleasant stroll that you'd think she was warming up for an exhibition match and not going for her 17th Grand Slam title on Sunday against Victoria Azarenka.
Williams got there by dropping just 16 games the entire tournament, winning more sets at love than she has 6-3. She hasn't just been dominant, she's been at a level that not only has her the heavy favorite on Sunday against Azarenka, a player she holds a 12-3 record against, but a favorite to win the thing in straight sets.
The road Williams has had to the final isn't exactly an easy one by the rankings, but each match has seemed to almost get easier for the defending champion. After running into Sloane Stephens in the fourth round, it was all bagels against Carla Suarez Navarro and 6-0, 6-3 against Li Na on Friday.
It's been an interesting year for Williams, who opened with an early exit at the Australian Open followed by a win in Paris and then a shocking loss in the fourth round at Wimbledon.
At 31 (turning 32 at the end of this month), most tennis players are on a spiraling return to mortality, but for Serena it has been one of her better years and a win on Sunday would be the sixth time she was able to win two Grand Slams in the same season (she's won three Slams in the same season only once, back in '02).
The longevity of her career will be something we will marvel at when she finally steps away considering she first won this tournament back in 1999 and has a chance to repeat in '12 and '13 and she's been doing all this while partnering with sister Venus in the doubles, making it to the semifinals where they will play their match on Friday evening.
It's just been an incredible two weeks for Serena, who has found a level of tennis after 30 that rivals anything she's ever brought to the court, and unlike a lot of players that start to slip once they get out of their 20s, Williams looks like she has a few years left to not only contend in Grand Slams, but win them in bunches.
- Sports & Recreation
- Serena Williams
- Victoria Azarenka