Serena captures 73rd singles title, braced for Australian Open contention

After clinching her first WTA title in almost three years on Sunday, Serena Williams prepares for her next assault at a Grand Slam in what she hopes will be a 24th successful grand slam campaign.

Read: Aus bushfires – Federer, Williams and Nadal to serve in aid of crisis

The Auckland Classic victory made it singles title number 73 for the American powerhouse, for which she raked in prize money totalling $43 000 (about R621 000). Williams, as part of a star cast of tennis players who have pledged to raise funds for victims of the Australian bushfires, donated her winnings toward the relief efforts which have been set up.

Related image
American female tennis ace, Serena Williams, packed a powerful punch en route to winning her 73rd singles title at the Auckland Classic (Image: Sourced).

Since winning her 23rd Grand Slam at the 2017 Australian Open, Williams lost all of five previous finals, four coming at majors, before enduring the longest title drought of her glittering career. The American was visibly relieved at the back of her latest win. Williams’ next target is the illustrious 24 Grand Slams club, a feat which will put her on par with Australian great, Margaret Court. At 38 years of age, this is a real possibility for the mother of one.

Related image
Williams will hope to put on a dominant showing at the year’s Australian Open if she is to rake in her 24 Grand Slam title (Image: AO).

“It’s pretty satisfying to get a win in a final. That was really important for me,” Williams told reporters. “I want to build on it,” she added. “Obviously, it is a step towards the next goal in Melbourne.”

While looking rusty in Auckland en route to capturing her latest single, Williams went on to produce arguably the performance of the tournament as she thrashed American teenager Amanda Anisimova 6-1 6-1 in the semi-finals. Williams, however, had to dig deep in the final before winning it 6-3 6-4 against fellow-American, Jessica Pegula, who matched the top seed from the baseline and attacked her powerful serve.”