Indian Wells – After going down 6-3, 6-4 at Indian Wells on Monday, Serena Williams admitted she was surprised by the level of her sister Venus' play.
Serena may still be a bit rusty, having only just returned to the game after giving birth to her first child, but the younger Williams sister seemed more shocked at the level of her sibling's play, not her own.
“I definitely know her well, but she definitely played a little bit better than she normally does,” said Serena, who looked stone-faced as she left the court after the defeat. “She served very consistently. She just did everything great.”
Serena also admitted, however, that her level is not where she wants it to be.
“Missing shots that I never miss, and so close,” she said. “At least they’re in the margin. I’m getting there. It’s not exactly where I want to be, but I’ll get there eventually.
“It’s good that I don’t have to say that this is the best tennis I have ever played and I lost,” she added. “My room for improvement is incredible.”
As for Venus, she attributed the victory to having more match practice than her sister, and credited Serena for her attempted fightback from two breaks down in the second set.
Serena regained one of those lost breaks, but soon gave away another break of her own, which meant her second break at 2-5 did not prevent Venus from having an opportunity to serve out the match, which she duly took.
“I’m just lucky that I’ve played more matches than her right now,” Venus said. “She just came roaring back. I had chances for the match to be over, but it wasn’t.
“I think she’s going to be speeding back to the seedings and to winning tournaments sooner than later."
Meanwhile, Roger Federer was also asked about Serena's comeback, and said that it could turn into the tennis story of the year.
“That’s going to be a huge story, maybe the story of the year,” Federer said. “Hopefully, she decides to play a lot and enjoy herself in the process and get back to who knows how high? It almost doesn’t matter, but it would just be amazing to see her do it now.”