US Open: Serena Williams’ last hurrah at home grand slam headlines fascinating two weeks of tennis. It will also feature the most anticipated final match in the Open era, a clash between Williams and Novak Djokovic, the defending champion, who is only 10-6 in their last 26 meetings.
The top seed will be up against the 14-time major champion in this year’s only Grand Slam final, after losing the last one to Roger Federer in 2010 in the semifinals.
A lot can change for Williams, who has never had a Grand Slam loss at the Open. Her last time out at the USO was also her last grand slam final appearance, in 1999 at the U.S. Open, where she captured her second major title.
“I’m going to enjoy this great moment of my life,” Williams said. “I’ve been an incredibly lucky lady so far. But I have to go through this with a lot of love, and it means a lot to me to be back here in New York. I’m in incredible form right now and I’ve been playing so well. With every single loss I feel I lose a step. That’s the way I go into the matches, I think it’s a positive step for me.”
Williams is a three-time champion at the USO, but has never won a major title at any of the three other major tournaments — the US Open, French Open or Wimbledon. And she’s won the French Open only once, back in 2000.
As for Djokovic, he has never won the Grand Slam, losing his lone French Open crown in three sets to Roger Federer in the semifinals last year.
The top seed faces the 28-year-old Djokovic, who has won his last five matches in New York after beating Andy Murray in the quarterfinals, the most recent of those in 2011. Djokovic is 3-0 in their last three meetings, all of them in New York.
Djokovic won a marathon five-setter there last September, when he defeated Stan Wawrinka in five sets. But in the final set, Djokovic was broken by Wawrinka in the tiebreaker when he was serving for the match, and the Serb held on for a 6-5 victory.