Serena Williams hails Tiger Woods’ influence as she continues her US Open run, as US media and fans praise the tennis star for a win of historic proportions.
Serena Williams has become the first female player since the late Jim Bunning to win the US Open while not having played a single match on the men’s tour.
Serena, 27, won her US Open title with a victory over China’s Li Na in a marathon match on Sunday that covered eight hours and saw both players drop to their knees in celebration at the end of play.
US media and fans celebrate Serena’s US Open win
It has been a long road for the world number one, who has been struggling to win her first major title since she upset then World No 1, Victoria Azarenka, in the 2012 French Open final, and a comeback from cancer.
Speaking to BBC Sport, Serena said: “It’s really been an amazing journey.
“I have a great family. My brother and sister are just wonderful people. But I think a lot of it is out of my control and it’s definitely been a lot of work, but it’s been worth it.”
Williams’ decision to skip the French Open is widely seen as an attempt to push her recovery back.
But she had other motivations for making the decision that will keep her away from the court for the next two months.
‘I have been through a lot’
Williams’ mother, Margaret, had to have emergency heart surgery in August, two months after being diagnosed with cancer.
After months of treatment, Serena’s mother-in-law, Judy Carter, was diagnosed with cancer in September and died in October.
Williams’ mother, Margaret, collapsed on the court after her US Open victory
Williams has now lost all three of her Grand Slams but her record in Grand Slam matches has taken a battering during the last year, with her most recent