Exclusive – Why Serena Williams deserves to be hailed as the greatest of all time

Serena Williams 2016 Wimbledon trophy

Serena Williams is still a major contender to win Grand Slam titles, as she prepares for another attempt to win what would be a record-equalling major title at the Australian Open.

That’s the verdict of former world No 7 Barbara Schett, who believes 2021 could be a year of glory for the enduring champion of the women’s game.

Williams has tried and failed to win a 24th Grand Slam that would equal Margaret Court’s all-time record over the past couple of years, but the 39-year-old has not lifted one of the four big prizes in the sport since winning the 2017 Australian Open.

Williams won that title while pregnant with her daughter and now she is back in Melbourne, with Eurosport presenter Schett convinced she could have more moments of glory to celebrate at the tail end of her remarkable career.

“It’s incredible that she wants to win another Grand Slam title at the age of 39,” Schett told Tennis365 in an exclusive interview.

“I can’t believe she is playing at such a good level at this age. It is not like she is playing a couple of rounds and bowing out. No, she is getting deep into these tournaments and it is very impressive.

“If someone had told me Serena and Roger Federer would still be playing and competing at the age of 39, I’d have said no chance. I retired when I was 28 and I felt I was too old, so this is incredible from these two great champions.”

Eurosport analyst Barbara Schett
Barbara Schett

Schett believes Williams is driven by the desire to be remembered as the greatest player of all time, with the 24th Grand Slam title part of her coronation.

“Where does Serena get the motivation from. It is astonishing to me,” she added. “I think she wants to go down as the greatest tennis player of all time and that is why she is so keen to get this Margaret Court record.

“To me, already she should be remembered as the best ever. I want her to win another one now because she deserves it.”

Watch the 2021 Australian Open live on Eurosport and Eurosport app.

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