The Tennis Greats: The Williams Sisters

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Although each deserves to be remembered as a separate entity, there is no ignoring the phenomenon that is the Williams sisters. Still both active players at the time of writing, the sisters have won an amazing twenty Grand Slam singles titles between them as well as a further twelve as a ladies’ doubles partnership and two each as mixed doubles players. Their dominance of the women’s game has been criticised and lauded in equal measure, but only the most stubborn could fail to see how impressive it has been.

Venus, born in 1980, was the first to make an impact on the professional game, but was rapidly caught up by her sister, born the following year. At the time of writing, Serena has won 13 Grand Slam titles to her sister’s seven, although Venus has been more affected by injuries during the course of her career. That notwithstanding, Serena is considered by experts to have the more complete game, evidenced by her having won all four Grand Slam tournaments where Venus has won five at Wimbledon and two at the US Open.

Among the criticisms of their games, both are considered by skeptics to have excessively powerful playing styles. This, it is argued, makes the game less of a spectacle to watch – but this fails to take into account the high level of accuracy that both possess and their tactical abilities. When the Williams sisters have both retired, the women’s game may take some time to find even one player with the same natural talent as either sister.

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