(August 27, 2015) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – The singles draws were held for the US Open on Thursday. Defending champion Serena Williams, who is seeking to complete the first Grand Slam since Steffi Graf accomplished the feat back in 1988 faces a competitive quarter of her draw. Williams, who is a six-time champion could face US countrywomen in the third and fourth rounds – Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys. Also in Williams’ quarter of the draw is her sister Venus Williams and Belinda Bencic, the 12th seed, who defeated Serena in Toronto just two weeks ago.
”You have Sloane, I seem to play her every tournament,” Williams said to media. ”Madison is playing really well. So is Sloane, actually – she’s playing excellent. So it’s not anything simple or easy to go through.”
Serena could potentially face third seed Maria Sharapaova in the semifinal. The world No. 1 opens her quest for her 22nd major against Russia’s Vitalia Diatchenko ranked 86th in the world.
“I feel like there’s always another record, then there’s always another person to catch up with or to pass.I never really thought I would be in this position where I would even be talking about, you know, records, talking about passing Steffi Graf or even mentioning Margaret Court.
“I mean, I just grew up trying to be the best that I could and do the best that I could. I worked really hard for everything. So to even be mentioned in that conversation is great.
“But like I said, I feel like I don’t put that pressure on myself to do anything here ’cause I’m obviously going to be excited to compete next year and just keep going and have fun.”
Asked about if she thought about her place among the tennis greats, Serena said: “I can’t sit here and say [I’m the greatest]. But I can sit here and say that I’m the greatest player that I’ve been able to be.
“I do read numbers and I do see numbers. I believe in those numbers. I think, you know, different generations and different times have different champions, have different greats, have different levels of players. It’s really difficult to compare, you know, one generation to another, generations several ago. Things change: power, technique, technology. A lot of things have contributed to that.”
“I think being experienced has really helped me a lot, helped me get through a lot of matches. It’s helped me overcome a lot of things. Yeah, it’s been great. I’ve really enjoyed it. I know some matches I got through just on my experience alone, so that’s been really able to help me out.
Potential women’s quarterfinals:
(1)Serena Williams vs. (8)Karolina Pliskova
(3)Maria Sharapova vs. (7)Ana Ivanovic
(5)Petra Kvitova vs. (4)Caroline Wozniacki
(2)Simona Halep vs. (6)Lucie Safarova
On the men’s side of the draw, top seed Novak Djokovic could face eighth seed Rafael Nadal in a quarterfinal clash in Flushing Meadows. Second seed Roger Federer and third seed Andy Murray are on the other side of the draw. Murray has a potentially extremely competitive opening match against Nick Kyrgios. Nadal also will have all he can handle against Borna Coric in the first round.
Potential men’s quarterfinals:
(1)Novak Djokovic vs. (8)Rafael Nadal
(4)Kei Nishikori vs. (7)David Ferrer
(5)Stan Wawrinka vs. (3)Andy Murray
(2)Roger Federer vs. (6) Tomas Berdych