2011 US Open: Serena Williams Is Back with a Vengeance

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2011 US Open: Serena Williams Is Back with a Vengeance
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Serena Williams

Whether you like Serena Williams or not, there is no disputing her dominance in women's tennis. Serena, along with sister Venus, changed the landscape of women's tennis when they hit the WTA in September 1995.

Women's tennis has always enjoyed a competitive spirit with the likes of Stephi Graf, Chris Everett and Martina Navratilova, to name a few.

When the Williams sisters turned pro, the players and fans saw power in a way not witnessed before. Serena's and Venus' serve speeds and returns were the fastest ever recorded in the open era.

During the last year while Serena was out nursing a foot injury and blood clots in her lungs, she watched her ranking drop to an all-time low of 175. All the while a new top 10 was unfolding with fresh new faces in addition to some more tenured players. How would these players fair if Serena were to return?

Serena answered that question loud and clear by winning her first non-Slam title since 2009 this past week at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford. Serena beat Maria Sharapova 6-1, 6-3 in the quarterfinals, Sibine Lisicki 6-1, 6-2 in the semifinals and Marion Bartoli 7-5, 6-1 in the finals.

This would be Serena's 38th title and she is just getting started. Serena has played in three tournaments since her return this year and her competition has choked in her presence.

If Serena can accomplish all this and jump up nearly 90 places to her current ranking of 79 in just three tournaments, you can bet she will stop at nothing to take home the 2011 US Open title.

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