Serena Williams powered to a record 307th Grand Slam match win on Saturday to reach the fourth round of the US Open.
Williams moved ahead of Martina Navratilova for most match wins in the majors by a woman, and tied Roger Federer’s mark for men with a 6-2, 6-1 pasting of Sweden’s Johanna Larsson.
The American superstar, seeking a record seventh US Open title, next faces Kazakhstan’s Yaroslava Shvedova, a 6-2, 7-5 winner over China’s Zhang Shuai.
“That’s pretty awesome,” Williams said of surpassing Navratilova. “And what better place to do than here where it all started.”
History.— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) September 3, 2016
Serena wins 307th Grand Slam match, passing Martina Navratilova to become winningest woman in GS history. pic.twitter.com/pxaXJRcPBV
Williams claimed the first of her 22 Grand Slam singles titles at the US Open in 1999. A 23rd major triumph would take her past the Open Era record she now shares with Steffi Graf and closer to Margaret Court’s all-time record of 24.
Although a right shoulder injury had left Williams looking vulnerable since her triumph at Wimbledon, she needed just an hour to subdue Larsson, the world number 47 who has never made it past the third round of a Grand slam and had lost in the first round of her six prior US Open appearances.
“It was a really good match for me, because she played a different kind of game,” Williams said. “It was really good for me to have a different type of rhythm and just move the ball around. So overall it was pretty good.”
MARTINA PRAISE FOR SERENA
“That’s pretty awesome (the record)…and what better place to do than here where it all started.”
Serena Williams Becomes Winningest Woman In Open History- amazing!!! https://t.co/Wvqzsu83HS— Martina Navratilova (@Martina) September 3, 2016
WINS FOR BIRTHDAY BOY AND GIRL
Dominic Thiem, the eighth seed, celebrated his 23rd birthday with a four-set win over Pablo Carreno Busta.
Wins in 2016— José Morgado (@josemorgado) September 3, 2016
Murray, 52 pic.twitter.com/9JQzMYXy1N
Meanwhile, Spanish 11th seed Carla Suarez Navarro was 28 on Saturday and she marked the occasion by beating Elena Vesnina in straight sets.
HALEP’S BACK IS AIR TIGHT
“It’s the air conditioning — it blocked my back.” This was Simona Halep’s take on her back injury after seeing off Timea Babos in New York.
So Halep does this and wins the final four points to advance to week two. Good news for racquet tossers. pic.twitter.com/38Wk4gDFUG— TennisNow (@Tennis_Now) September 3, 2016