World No. 1 Serena Williams (Player Info) has been a dominant force on the women’s WTA Tour over the past two season, compiling a 73-4 record this season and over $10,000,000 in prize money in 2013 alone. In the eyes of the majority of tennis fans, she is virtually unbeatable when at her best and an absolute favourite in any Grand Slam tournament. While it does not appear that there are any true contenders prepared to dethrone the reigning queen of the tour at the moment, Williams admits that she is vulnerable to losses and is aware of the growing threats around her, even if fans are not truly convinced in her opposition.
“Everyone is beatable I think at some point. I know I am,” she said. “Everyone is a threat, you know. I don’t feel like I’m above anyone. I’m just playing and doing the best I can. That’s all I can do.
Williams has put together an outstanding WTA season this year with 10 titles including two Grand Slam championships (Roland Garros & US Open). Her victory at Flushing Meadows was a particularly impressive one as she beat Sloane Stephens, Li Na and Victoria Azarenka en route to her 17th Grand Slam title. She earned her 10th title of the season last week in Beijing when she defeated Jelena Jankovic with a back injury to regain the title for the first time since 2004. It was a brave and resilient effort from the top seed, who clearly looked to be in a great deal of pain.
“I’m definitely being challenged. I was down a couple set points in a couple matches. I was able to pull through with that. Got a little lucky.”
Serena believes that there is always a new threat on the WTA Tour waiting for their opportunity to shine and topple the giant. Rising female stars such as Laura Robson, Eugenie Bouchard, Madison Keys encompasses some of the talent flourishing around the world No. 1. She also knows that the other elite players in the top 10 are patiently waiting for their opportunity to surpass Serena in the rankings. Victoria Azarenka is one of the few women to defeat Williams this year and is considered to be her biggest rival at this stage of her career.
“Everyone definitely presents a challenge. Every time I step out the a court it’s a challenge. I’m vulnerable to not winning. I go out there focused the best I can every time.”
Williams became the oldest player ever to achieve the No. 1 ranking when she regained the title in February. She joins Justine Henin and Martina Hingis as a three-time year-end No. 1, with only Steffi Graf (8), Martina Navratilova (7), Chris Evert (5) and Lindsay Davenport (4) ahead of her.
“I’m just happy that I’m just working hard to be the best right now. Soon it will be someone else.”