July 16, 2024
Serena Williams

Serena Williams led the head-to-head with Maria Sharapova 20-2.
Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams were both great players, of course, but while they battled for WTA No. 1 at times, the rivalry was very one-sided. Not only did Williams lead the head-to-head 20-2, but in those matches, Williams won 41 sets and Sharapova just seven. No disrespect to Sharapova who was a fantastic player, but she was no Serena Williams.

That is because, in the history of women’s tennis, no player has ever been Serena Williams. Margaret Court also won 24 majors, but that was a completely different time and Court would have been no match for the powerful Williams. No one would make the argument that Court is better.

Sharapova and Williams did not seem to get along during their playing years, though. Maybe part of the reason was that Williams wanted to demolish everything that stood in her way of winning titles and being ranked No. 1. Williams had a combined 319 weeks atop the rankings, third all-time, while Sharapova spent 21 weeks at No. 1.

Serena Williams sets record straight about her rivalry with Maria Sharapova
Again, no disrespect to the Russian. Most players never reach No. 1. She had a great career, just not a career that rivals Williams.

During a recent presentation of The Serena Collection, Williams was asked about her rivalry with Sharapova. The two women have both become successful business people as well but their companies do not compete against each other in a way the players did not the court. Williams brought some levity to the rivalry with her answer.

Williams said, “Not anymore. I mean, was there ever beef? I guess. It was just competitive. She was winning. I was winning, you know, we both wanted to win, and I don’t think it was personal. It was just, ‘Do you want to win?”

This likely mirrors the same situation between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Tennis fans might like to see that rivalry through a prism and believe that not only do the players want to beat each other on the court, but that they also probably hate each other individually. This brought a bit of heightened interest to their matches when they were both still competing for Grand Slams.

In several years, we will probably find out that while not close friends, Djokovic and Nadal did not harbor ill-will toward each other just as Sharapova and Williams seemingly did not either. All the players were just battling to win. That is not personal, just business.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com