It has eluded her so far but Serena Williams remains determined to secure that elusive 24th grand slam title and tie Margaret Court’s all-time record.
Superstar Williams has lost her past four major finals since returning from maternity leave in 2018.
But she gets another opportunity to correct that at the US Open in New York, where she is seeded third in a field that is missing six of the world’s top 10 women.
The 38-year-old Williams opens her campaign against fellow American Kristie Ahn – who made the US Open fourth round last year – on Tuesday.
With all players following strict bubble protocols and contesting their first mid-pandemic major, sans fans on site, Williams knows this will be a tournament like no
“I’ve been definitely proudly stuck here, party of one. I’m pretty happy about it,” the 23-time grand slam champion said on Saturday when asked about that elusive number 24.
“Obviously I’m never satisfied. That’s been the story of my career. So, yeah, it is what it is.
“I took a year and a half off for a baby. So I don’t know.
“It’s like I’ll never be satisfied until I retire. I’m never going to stop until I retire.
“It’s just my personality. That’s how I got to be here.”
World No.3 Karolina Pliskova is the top seed and won’t get a better chance to end her major drought when play commences at Flushing Meadows.
Reigning Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin is the second seed and could take on Williams in the semi-finals. Kenin plays Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer in the first round.
Many eyes will be on 16-year-old American Coco Gauff, who shared an iconic moment with Naomi Osaka last year in New York, when her Japanese opponent consoled her after their third round, and invited Gauff to join her in the on-court interview post-match to cheer her up.
The pair could face off once again in the third round but fourth-seeded Osaka must first make a swift recovery from a hamstring injury that forced her out of Saturday’s Western & Southern Open final.
Gauff is feeling confident ahead of her US Open first round against Latvian No.31 seed Anastasia Sevastova.
“I think it’s [my game is] the best it’s ever been,” the popular teen said.
Three-time US Open champion Kim Clijsters is ready to contest her first grand slam since 2012.