Serena Williams out of the Australian Open after an insane quarterfinal match

TENNIS : Australian Open - Melbourne - 23/01/2019

Serena Williams v. Karolina Pliskova was the last women’s quarterfinal of the Australian Open. Just a half hour before Pliskova and Serena took the court, Naomi Osaka won her QF match, and she awaited the winner for the semifinal. That was what people were looking towards, the potential Osaka-Williams redux of last year’s US Open final. People were primed for it. It’s not that anyone discounted Pliskova, it’s just that we thought an in-form Serena would find a way to dispatch her, even though Pliskova is quite tricky when she’s in-form too.

Pliskova went up a break in the first and closed out the set in something like 30 minutes. Serena looked pretty flat, especially when Pliskova broke her serve again in the second set. Then, finally, it happened. Serena started playing better in important points and Pliskova got a bit tight. Serena managed – somehow, it was crazy – to win the second set. Then Serena started rolling through the third – she was up 5-1, having broke Pliskova twice in that set, and serving for the match. On match point, a foot fault was called on Serena. She barely reacted – there was no verbal assault of the line judge like that infamous incident at the 2009 US Open. She served again, it was still match point. Then during that point, Serena did something to her ankle. It looked like it hurt, and even more than that, it shook her confidence. What happened next is that Pliskova managed to reel off six games in a row even when Serena held several match points. IT WAS INSANE.

Rena Fans – and I’m one of them – were mad at the world, mad at the line judge, mad at Serena’s ankle, mad at Pliskova, mad at the Australian Open. Looking back on all of the potential scenarios, I think it would have been the best thing if Serena had called for the trainer during the changeover at 5-2, even if she didn’t want to call more attention to her ankle issue. It would have been good for Serena to just have a few extra minutes to refocus. She said in in her final tournament interview that she didn’t call the trainer because “I like to kind of just tough it out.” UGH. Wimbledon can’t come soon enough.

TENNIS : Australian Open - Melbourne - 23/01/2019

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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19 Responses to “Serena Williams out of the Australian Open after an insane quarterfinal match”

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  1. Sarah says:

    Serena’s days of winning slams are probably over. There are just too many talented young lions to have to overcome now.

  2. TheOriginalMia says:

    That hurt. So close. She was so dominating and that stupid foot fault messed her up. Add to that the ankle roll and it was over.

  3. Mellie says:

    damn…she’ll be back though!

  4. Beach Dreams says:

    That was such a horrible way to lose a match. I’m not sure she would’ve beaten Osaka but she was getting into great form for most of the third set.

    And am I the only one who can’t stand Pliskova? She’s so arrogant with nothing to show for it, other than getting the ‘honor’ of being a slamless former world number one. People like to say it’s just her personality but she’s definitely been irksome and off-putting.

    • tw says:

      There’s something off with Piliskova. I’m not sure its arrogance, she just seems very strange to me.

    • AKS says:

      Beach Dreams – the only thing I find irksome and offputting is mean spirited comments based on absolutely nothing. I think pliskova has a very cool and clinical demeanour when she plays, nothing wrong with that!

    • Clare says:

      Nothing to show for it? She just beat the greatest tennis player of all time. Your problem with her is that she outplayed Serena.

      Serena is great but she is also human – I think it’s a huge disservice to the sport, and to her, to make excuses (line judge, poorly ankle, bad weather, whatever) every time a favourite athlete loses – sometimes those reasons are valid, obviously, but sometimes our favourites just get outplayed. What’s even worse is making random attacks of the opponent because you don’t like the look of them – the very antithesis of sportsmanship

      • Beach Dreams says:

        You and AKS have no idea about why I believe Pliskova is arrogant. It has nothing to do with beating Serena and everything to do with her past comments and attitude. Smashing your racquet repeatedly against an umpire’s chair and then joking about it afterwards is low class and arrogant to me and that’s just one example. Maybe ask why next time before making ignorant assumptions about my opinions.

      • AKS says:

        So many tennis players smash their racquets on court (including Serena). By the time they get to a press conference/interview they’ve had time to cool off. I don’t think it’s arrogant to have a more measured response and god forbid she found humour in the situation (!)

      • AKS says:

        I also enjoyed your “that’s just one example” as if you have the time to compile a dossier against Karolina Pliskova….. (!)

  5. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Although I think her ankle was the culprit here, sometimes, during important matches, if your opponent breaks enough serves, it does something. God forbid you lose a serve game.

  6. tw says:

    It was hard to watch. I actually found myself leaving the room a lot during the match because I felt stressed. She’ll get there, she’ll get 24 AND 25:)

    PS, the foot fault on match point seemed shady AF.

  7. roey says:

    I LOVE you guys and your site is with my morning coffee, but can you consider not putting spoilers about a sporting event with such a drastic time difference in the headline? 7am in California….hadn’t watched the match yet. I promise I won’t open the article to find out the score if you put it there…

  8. Gigi La Moore says:

    She’s the G.O.A.T. with nothing left to prove. With that being said, I would like to see her move into commentating. If she stays, then I would like to see her get more fit. She’s strong but increasing her fitness level will help her game immensely.

    • Tw says:

      I would love to see her around tennis, too after she retires. But I think she has other interests – sitting on boards, her Serena line. I guess we will see but hope not too soon!

    • MissM says:

      She needs to go out on top. Retiring now would be a huge disappointment and would be a sad end to an incredible career, I want to see her pull off another Serena Slam.
      With that said, her fitness seems to be the problem here. She isnt as spry as she was before sge had her baby which isnt ideal when competing against all of these super young girls.

  9. B says:

    Ehhhhh Serena would rather lose to Pliskova than to lose to Osaka for the third time in a row. *Side eye at you Serena*