She overcame stubborn resistance from defending champion Maria Sharapova in the French Open final Saturday to clinch her 16th Grand Slam title, beating the Russian 6-4, 6-4 and extending her own winning streak to 31 matches.
‘’I want to go out in my peak. That’s my goal. But have I peaked yet?’’ Williams said. ‘’I definitely want to continue my journey to get a few more.’’
Williams has some way to go before retiring, then, and a long way to go to match Australian Margaret Court’s 24 major titles. But she will catch Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert by the end of the year if she wins Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.
That would then leave Helen Wills Moody (19), Steffi Graf (22) and Court – who may just be a little too far off to catch.
‘’I always said that I felt like I have never played my best tennis. I have said that for years, that I feel like I can always do better and play better,’’ Williams said. ‘’The day I feel that I cannot improve, it’s going to be a problem for me. I’m going to have to debate whether I should keep playing. But I feel like as of know I can do a lot of things better.’’
Williams’ elation on clinching her second French Open title almost made up for her despondency after her shocking first-round loss to 111th-ranked Virgine Razzano at Roland Garros last year.
‘’I’m still a little bit upset about that,’’ Williams said. ‘’If I lose all hell breaks loose, literally.’’