Serena Williams and Caroline Wozniacki ended their respective runs at this year’s Australian Open. The first one will probably come back here at least once more, while Wozniacki’s loss marked the end of her career as well.
Williams suffered elimination at the Australian Open against a player she demolished at the US Open last year. The Chinese player Wang Qiang, proceeded to the third round of the first Grand Slam of the year, after defeating one of the greatest ever with 2-1 6-4, 6-7 (2), 7-5.
The battle, which lasted for more than two and a half hours, saw Serena exiting Aussie Open following her shortest appearance in Melbourne.
“I just made far too many errors to be a professional athlete today,” Serena stated. “I can’t play like that. Like, I literally can’t do that again. That’s unprofessional. It’s not cool.”
Serena Williams falls in the third round of the Australian Open to Wang Qiang.
It’s the first time she’s lost in the first week of a hard-court major since 2006. pic.twitter.com/EoChzPMdEh
— ESPN (@espn) January 24, 2020
The seven-time champion here made 56 unforced errors, which is, according to all the experts scandalous. This was by far one of her worst ever matches, and it denied her a chance to reach Margaret Court and the record of 24 Grand Slam titles.
Last year, Serena smashed Qiang in New York with 6-1, 6-0, and there weren’t many people who believed that the outcome of this event would be much different. However, that is just what happened.
“After last time,” Wang said, “I did really hard work on the court, off the court. I always believe I can do this one day. But I don’t know which day, but it’s coming today.”
Serena was supposed to lose this one much earlier, but she managed to win the second set through a tiebreaker. Instead of using the momentum and swing generated after this, Williams continued to play as she did up until this point, giving away easy points to her opponent.
Eventually, there wasn’t a way for her to come back into this event, and the Chinese celebrated one of the biggest moments of her life.
Another champion ended her quest here, only this one finished her career as well. Caroline Wozniacki lost to Ons Jabeur 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, and left the court in tears as she knew that this contest happened to be her last.
“I think it was only fitting that my last match would be a three-setter — a grinder and that I would finish my career with a forehand error,” Wozniacki said.
One of the most accessible and polite world No.1’s ever, couldn’t hide and control her emotions, which saw her bursting into tears on several occasions. It seems that her ending everything in Melbourne only emphasized the entire experience because Wozniacki won the only Grand Slam trophy right here two years ago.
Papa Wozniacki presenting his daughter for the last time 😂 pic.twitter.com/B3H5BgzdXH
— LorenaPopa 🕵️♀️🎾 (@popalorena) January 24, 2020
Apart from that, the Danish player has 29 other WTA titles, and numerous other achievements. With 71 weeks as the No.1, she was second among the active players behind Serena Williams.
Wozniacki decided to retire after being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis some 18 months ago. This is an autoimmune disease that causes joints to hurt and limits their mobility. She decided to move on from tennis and dedicate her life to making it easier for the people with the same problems and to support them in their battle for a normal life.
“I want to be a role model. That’s something I’m very passionate about — also showing the way to other people who are struggling with RA, that you can do anything you put your mind to,” she said.
Instead of seeing the two in the next round, Qiang and Jabeur are going to play against one another.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.