Tennis fans crowd into the Billie Jean USTA National Tennis Center for the opening day of the U.S. Open.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES (AUGUST 29, 2015) (REUTERS) – Tennis fans crowded their way into the Billie Jean King USTA National Tennis Center on Monday (August 31) for the start of the U.S. Open.
The masses have all turned their focus towards and support towards Serena Williams, who is on the brink of the grandest achievement in tennis, the single season Grand Slam.
The 33-year-old American, with the 2015 Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon trophies already on her crowded mantle, will be gunning to complete the first season’s sweep of the slams since Steffi Graf in 1988. The last man to accomplish the feat was Rod Laver in 1969.
“It’s going to be awesome. It’s going to be historic. She’s already got the Serena Slam. Now, to get the Grand Slam in the calendar year – she’s the greatest of all time, hands down, and this will solidify it,” said Lisa Bizzell, a tennis fan from Dallas, Texas.
“More athletic than Steffi. Steffi was finesse. Serena’s got it all in one package.”
Another fan favorite is Rafael Nadal, a 14-times grand slam singles winner.
“We’re big fans of Rafa Nadal. I’m happily married, but my wife says if she ever leaves me for somebody, it’s going to be for Rafa,” joked another tennis fan waiting in the long lines outside the tennis center.
Many of the toped ranked players are in action on the first day, with last year’s finalists Marin Cilic and Kei Nishikori in early action, with world number one Novak Djokovic playing later in the afternoon. The first evening session of the tournament will feature Nadal and Williams.
If she wins the tournament, Williams would become the sixth player to register a Grand Slam following Don Budge (1938) and Laver (1962, 1969) on the men’s side and Maureen Connolly (1953), Court (1970) and Graf (1988).