The hunt for the elusive record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title continues to haunt Serena Williams. It has been four years since Serena last lifted a major title.
The 39-year-old has since reached four Grand Slam finals, but has failed to match Margaret Court’s long-standing record.
After suffering early exits in both Rome and Parma, Serena’s preparations for the French Open have not gone according to plan. While the three-time Roland Garros champion will be a top five pick heading into the second slam of the year, Williams has not been past the fourth round at Roland Garros since 2016.
Longtime coach Patrick Mouratoglou claimed he is not concerned despite the slow start to Serena’s clay-court campaign.
He said: “I think she lost because she was not ready. I don’t know, but maybe it was not a good idea to play in Parma after losing in Rome. Her match in Rome showed a lot of things that still needed to be worked on to be able to compete at the highest level.”
“I’m not worried in general because if she does the job she will be ready. It’s just about doing the job. I’ve always said regarding Serena that it’s all about her and it’s still all about her.”
Mouratoglou referenced this year’s Australian Open as a prime example of how Williams can play herself into form.
The Frenchman said: “When I saw her before the Australian Open for preparation, I thought ‘wow’ – a lot of work to get ready. But in a short period of time she was able to really hit great form. It didn’t take her too much time to get ready.”
Serena Williams unlikely to win her 24th Grand Slam title at Roland Garros
While Serena may be a three-time winner at Roland Garros, it has been the least rewarding of the four majors. Her strong serve and big ground strokes are blunted by the slowness of the clay-courts.
The former World no.1 will go into the French Open with just a single win on clay this season. While she often shows up on the big stages, it is difficult to say she is going to win Roland Garros.
Time is running out for Serena Williams as she continues her chase for the biggest record in tennis.
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