After her two-set semifinal win over Kiki Bertens on Friday, Serena Williams put herself in the 2016 French Open final against Garbiñe Muguruza. Williams is playing in her 27th Grand Slam final and fourth in Paris. She is 3-for-3 so far. Williams, 34, is also playing in her sixth final in the past seven grand slams,
but she is currently in a slump, by her standards. Williams was upset by Roberta Vinci at the U.S. Open last summer, and she fell to Angelique Kerber in the Australian Open Final last January. Although Williams has established herself as one of the greatest women’s tennis players ever, she can still prove even more of her dominance with a win this weekend.
1. Most Grand Slam Titles In The Open Era (22)
You may be saying, “Wait, didn’t Serena already do this?” No. When Williams cruised through the first five rounds of year’s U.S. Open, most writers, fans and even fellow players just assumed the record was in her grasp.
Williams had won four straight grand slams and only lost twice to that point in 2015. But Roberta Vinci pulled out an upset and Williams was forced to wait until 2016 to tie Steffi Graf’s record of 22 Grand Slams in the Open Era. Williams got another chance at the Australian Open, but Kerber foiled it.
2. Oldest Grand Slam Champion (34 years and 7 months)
Williams keeps beating her own record in this category. Last summer at Wimbledon, Williams, at 33 years and eight-and-a-half months, edged Martina Navratilova’s previous record for oldest female grand slam champion by defeating Muguruza. She can up that record by about 11 months with a victory in Paris.
Two men, Andres Gimeno, at 34 years and 10 months, and Ken Rosewall, at 37 years and two months, would still have a lead on Williams. She can pass Gimeno later this year at the U.S. Open. Of course, Roger Federer, who is a month older than Williams, can get ahead of her with any victory.
3. Second-Most French Open Titles For An American (4)
Although American men have been notoriously bad on clay, the women have enjoyed tremendous success. The U.S.’s 29 all-time titles and 15 Open Era titles are both most all-time
(Great Britain and Australia each have eight all-time titles and five countries have four Open Era titles). Williams, already second among American in Open Era French Open titles, can tie Helen Wills for second-most all-time with four French Open crowns.
4. First Paris Repeat
The French Open is the only Grand Slam where Williams is yet to repeat as champion. She has won back-to-back Wimbledons twice, back-to-back Australians once and posted a U.S. Open three-peat from 2012-2014.
Williams won her latest two French Opens in 2013 and 2015, but she was spanked by Muguruza — her opponent in this year’s final — 6-2, 6-2, in the second round of Roland Garros in 2014.
5. Fourth-Most Titles Across All Disciplines (37)
This is a lesser-known category to start following. Williams currently has 36 total grand slam titles when women’s doubles and mixed doubles are included with singles (Williams, who has 13 women’s doubles titles with sister Venus,
actually made four straight mixed doubles grand slam finals from the 1998 French Open to the 1999 Australian Open, winning with Max Mirnyi at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open in 1998).
Williams can tie Margaret Osborne DuPont at 37 with a French Open singles win. Next on the list is Billie Jean King at 39 titles. Williams will likely never catch Navratilova, who at 59 wins, leads the Open Era, and Court, who has 64 all-time victories.