Standing between Serena Williams and a history-making feat is family — none other than her older sister, Venus Williams.
Serena can capture her 23rd Grand Slam championship, which would make her tennis's all-time Open Era record holder, if she defeats Venus in the Australian Open final on Saturday morning.
Serena advanced to the final by cruising past Croatia's Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, 6-2, 6-1, in a semifinal rout Thursday. Venus punched her ticket to the final Wednesday via a 6-7, 6-2, 6-3 semifinal win over American Coco Vandeweghe.
That sets up the first all-Williams Grand Slam final since 2009, when the legendary sisters met in the Wimbledon championship match. Following her semifinal win, Serena spoke about her excitement facing Venus for the Australian Open championship, while acknowledging how tough the task will be to defeat her older sister.
"I was really proud of Venus, she's a total inspiration for me," Serena told the media, as reported by USA Today Sports. "She's my big sister, she's my world and my life. I'm just so happy for her, for both of us to be in the final. It is a dream come true."
She added, "She's my toughest opponent. No one has beaten me as much as Venus. I just feel whatever happens, we've won. A Williams is going to win this tournament."
Say that again, Serena!
Check out Serena's full comments below.
With Venus being 36-years-old to Serena's 35, Saturday's Australian Open final will mark the two oldest players to ever compete in a Grand Slam championship match in tennis history.
Serena maintains a 16-11 edge, including a 6-2 advantage in Grand Slam matches, over Venus in the 27 times they have played each other.
If Serena defeats Venus this weekend, she'll pull within one Grand Slam title of Margaret Court's 24 for the most in singles tennis history. Currently, Serena's 22 Grand Slam championships ties her with Steffi Graf.
BET Sports News — Get the latest news and information about African-Americans in sports, including weekly recaps, celebrity news and photos of your favorite Black athletes.
(Photo from left: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images, Michael Dodge/Getty Images)