Serena Williams faces tough road to title at US Open

Serena Williams has implied that her retirement will come after the U.S. Open, which starts on Aug. 29. (Robert Prange/Getty Images)

Serena Williams’ road to a 24th Grand Slam title was revealed Thursday, with the tennis great set to face off against some pretty big names at the US Open.

The 40-year-old announced her plans to retire from tennis after the US Open in a Vogue cover story earlier this month. In her final major, Williams would face off against four of the world’s top 10 players if her bracket shakes out according to ranking.

Just Women’s Sports breaks down what her road to the final could look like, taking the top possible seed for each matchup.

Dana Kovinić (-)

Williams’ first-round opponent, Kovinić is the lone unseeded player the 23-time major singles champion will face. The 80th ranked player in the world, Kovinić made the round of 32 at both the Australian Open and Roland Garros. She’s played some strong matches this year, beating Karolina Pliskova at Indian Wells and defending US Open champion Emma Raducanu at the Australian Open.

Anett Kontaveit (2)

If Williams makes it past Kovinić, she’ll face a tough test in Kontaveit in round two. Ranked second in the world behind Iga Swiatek, she’s already won one WTA title this year in St. Petersburg and made a few finals, including the final at Qatar, where she lost to Swiatek. 

She has yet to win a Grand Slam, with her highest US Open finish coming in 2020, when she advanced to the round of 16. 

Martina Trevisan (27)

Trevisan recently withdrew from the Tennis in the Land tournament, but she’s back for the New York City major. She’s won one title this year and made it all the way to the semifinals at Roland Garros, where she lost to Coco Gauff. 

Leylah Fernandez (14)

A meeting with Fernandez in the fourth round would be a doozy, as the teenager made it all the way to the US Open final last summer before falling to Emma Raducanu. Fernandez has dealt with injuries this summer, however, and is coming off a straight-set loss to Ekaterina Alexandrova at the Cincinnati Open. 

Ons Jabeur (5)

The fifth-ranked player in the world, Jabeur has had her fair share of wins this year. She’s also coming off a really good run at Wimbledon, where she made it all the way to the final before losing to Elena Rybakina.

Maria Sakkari (3)

Sakkari is another credible threat, although she’s struggled of late. She lost to eventual champion Caroline Garcia in the round of 32 in Cincinnati and Karolina Pliskova at the Canadian Open. 

Iga Swiatek (1)

The world No. 1, Swiatek already has won one major this year at the French Open. She also went on the longest win streak since 2000, surpassing both Williams and sister Venus. But she suffered an uncharacteristic loss in the round of 16 the Cincinnati Open, losing in straight sets to Madison Keys.