Serena Williams won her fourth U.S. Open title Sunday in an extremely entertaining and competitive match. Williams won against top-ranked Victoria Azarenka, 6-2, 2-6, 7-5. Combined with her Wimbledon crown, it was Williams' second Grand Slam title of the year and the fifteenth of her great career.
Azarenka will have to ponder a missed opportunity. She had a chance to serve out the championship at 5-4 in the third set, but Serena was able to break and tie the match. A hold by Williams and another break gave the title to the younger, and more decorated, of the famous Williams sisters.
I am not terribly interested in what the official rankings say. Right now Serena Williams is on top of the women's tennis world. Let's take a look at what she has accomplished since the French Open this year.
In May Williams was bounced from the French Open in the first round, the only time in her career she has lost in the first round of a major. Since then Williams has been almost unbeatable. She won the Wimbledon singles title, her fifth at the All-England Club. To top that, she won the doubles title with sister Venus.
After a detour to win a hard court event in Stanford, Williams returned to London for the 2012 Olympic Games. Serena pulled off the double of winning both the singles title and the doubles crown, again with Venus. They made the third and fourth gold medals Serena has earned in her career.
The early rounds of the 2012 U.S. Open seemed to put Azarenka and Williams on a collision course. They both dispatched their opponents with ease. Neither dropped a set before the quarters, but that is when their fortunes began to change. Azarenka had to go three tough sets to beat Sam Stosur in the quarters and again played three sets to beat Maria Sharapova in the semis.
Serena, on the other hand, dropped only one set all tournament, the second set today against Azarenka. I was impressed with Azarenka's ability to compose herself and win the second set after being rolled in the first. This truly was a great match, and credit Serena as the champion she is.
Serena Williams will be 31 years old in a couple of weeks. She is playing as well as ever and continues to further gild her all-world resume with major titles. Only she knows how long she wants to keep playing, but hopefully tennis fans appreciate the chance to watch one of the best women's tennis players of all time.Brad Boeker has been a fan of professional tennis for over 30 years. He coaches high school tennis in Illinois.