Serena Williams claimed her 100th win at the U.S. Open in style on Tuesday, dismantling her quarter-final opponent Wang Qiang 6-1 6-0 in a blistering 44-minute performance that ended any questions over a twisted ankle from the previous round.
Though the feat deserved no less than a big celebration, the 23-time Grand Slam champion was wary of “losing fans” after one question in her on-court interview after the quarterfinal match at the Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Williams wasted no time at all in the match as she overwhelmed her Qiang with powerful groundstrokes and huge first serves. The 37-year-old Williams was dominant from the start, firing off 25 winners, compared to zero from 18th-seed Wang, and winning 90% of her first serve points.
As the match ended sooner than expected, it gave the on-court interviewer to chat Williams a little bit longer that gave an opportunity to the fans to see the home favourite for some more time.
But there was one question which had Serena Williams nervous.
"Oh my god, I thought you were going to ask me to sing," the tennis star said, looking extremely relieved.
"I'm not trying to lose fans. I'm trying to keep them on my side," Serena Williams said.
The interviewer then insisted Serena Williams to confirm her love of karaoke, after which the American also dropped a famous Elton John line.
"I do and I am still standing. Thank you guys for helping me stand, I really appreciate it,” Serena quipped.
Serena will now face Elina Svitolina in the semi-finals. The 37-year-old tennis star is wary that she can't afford to drop her intensity. "She's had a great year," she said.
"She made the semi-finals of Wimbledon and I feel like she wants to go one further this time. So I have to be able to come out again and play really well. I'm ready, I'm happy and I'm enjoying every moment," Williams said.
Tuesday’s win was Serena Williams’ 100th victory at the US Open and she now trails just Chris Evert, who has 101, for the most in US Open history.
"I never thought that I would get to 100," Serena Williams said in her interview on court. "It didn't cross my mind I would still be out here. I love what I do. I love coming out with you guys. It's so special. I never want to let it go."
Serena Williams is trying to win her first major since the 2017 Australian Open, when she was pregnant. Her daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr, turned two on Sunday.