When Caroline Wozniacki’s return landed out Sunday night, Serena Williams collapsed to the court in celebration as the reality of her victory began to sink in. Williams captured the 2014 U.S. Open championship, her third straight and sixth U.S. Open championship overall, which took her to a career total to 18 Grand Slam titles. After the match, Williams spoke to the spectators at Arthur Ashe Stadium, which included filmmaker Spike Lee, recording artists Gladys Knight and 2Chainz, actor John Leguizamo, former New York City Mayor David Dinkins, actor Michael K. Williams and Star Jones “Thanks to the crowd. You guys were so amazing. It is a pleasure for me to win my first grand slam here and then this is No. 18 so I am really emotional,” Williams said as she tried to hold back tears, adding “I couldn’t have done it at a better place.”
Williams’ 18th grand slam title ties her with two tennis titans, Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova, who were on hand to congratulate her during the trophy ceremony. She talked about that feat after the match. “I just could never have imagined that I would be mentioned with Chris Evert or with Martina Navratilova, because I was just a kid with a dream and a racquet, living in Compton.”
What were the modest dreams of a young Serena? Simple. “To win the U.S. Open. Yeah, that was my dream … every time I win here it’s just a really incredibly special moment for me.” A special moment she has had the ability to experience six times.