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Serena shocked to stay number two

Date: 22 June - 5 July
Coverage: BBC One, BBC Two, BBC HD, Red Button, website streaming (UK only) and text commentary, 5 Live, 5 Live Sports Extra, BBC iPlayer
Tennis on the BBC

By Piers Newbery
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Serena Williams
Serena gets her hands on the Venus Rosewater Dish for the third time

World number two Serena Williams questioned the ranking system after winning Wimbledon to hold three of the four Grand Slam titles.

The 27-year-old beat her sister Venus 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 in the final, and then called the ranking system "shocking".

"I think if you hold three Grand Slam titles, maybe you should be number one, but not on the WTA Tour, obviously.

"My motivation is maybe just to win another Grand Slam and stay number two, I guess."

Serena remains behind Russia's Dinara Safina in the rankings despite being the reigning US Open, Australian Open and Wimbledon champion.

Safina, in contrast, has yet to win one of the sport's four major titles and was thrashed 6-0 6-1 by Venus in the Wimbledon semi-finals on Friday.

There's no 'easy' to losing, especially when you're so close to the crown

Venus Williams

Serena declared herself "the real number one" back in March and repeated her dissatisfaction with the system after regaining the Wimbledon crown.

"If it disappointed me I'd go crazy just thinking about it, I think anyone really could, but it's just shocking," she said.

"But whatever, it is what it is, I'd definitely rather be number two and hold three Grand Slams in the past year than be number one and not have any."

Asked if she still believed she was the rightful number one, Serena added: "I see myself as number two, that's where I am. I think Dinara did a great job to get to number one, she won Rome and Madrid."

The American has set her sights on matching Billie Jean King's total of 12 Grand Slam titles after winning her 11th at Wimbledon and moving to seventh in the all-time list.

"It's unbelievable," she said. "Now I'm just looking at the next goal. Someone like Billie Jean King is completely my idol. To get to her level and have 12 would be even better."

24 - Margaret Smith Court
22 - Steffi Graf
19 - Helen Wills Moody
18 - Chris Evert
18 - Martina Navratilova
12 - Billie Jean King
11 - Serena Williams

She added: "I'm really just playing for me, I can't even put myself in a sentence with the greatest because I think about people like Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf and Billie Jean King - they were such great champions and even to be mentioned with those is a real honour to me.

"I feel like I'm really young and I'm only thinking about my career and continuing playing."

Serena, who lost to Venus in last year's final after beating her for the title in 2002 and 2003, defeated her sister for the 11th time in 21 meetings on Saturday, and admitted: "It definitely wasn't easy, especially on this surface and out there on that court.

"Also, she's my sister, someone I want to see win and do well at all times."

And she added: "This is one of the few times I didn't expect to come out with the win today. I felt like I had nothing to lose, I'd defended every (ranking) point I had from last year.

"I felt like all I have to do is go out there and do my best, just stay even, because she's such a good player. When I won that first set I was like, 'Wow, this is great, no matter what I'm a set away.' I just tried to relax."


Asked if losing to her sister made the defeat easier, Venus said: "There's no 'easy' to losing, especially when you're so close to the crown. Either way is not easy."

And the 29-year-old again refused to give any details about the left knee problem that has seen her wear heavy strapping throughout the tournament.

The five-time champion lost her way on serve in the closing stages of the final, but insisted: "I've no complaints, everybody has something they're dealing with and I just wish I could have done a few things different in this match, but it was close."

Venus missed her chance to move ahead with two break points in game eight, missing with an attempted pass on the second.

"I don't think she was recovering and I thought she was going to be there, so basically I just went for too much," said Venus.

The Williams sisters have dominated at Wimbledon in recent years, with one of them taking the title in eight of the last 10 years.

"I think the big difference between her, and me also, is the serve," said Venus.

"There are women out there who also can serve big, but we serve big and very effectively, especially off the first serve. It seems like when we need the first serve, most of the time it's there."

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see also
Pundits on Serena's victory
04 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Serena powers to Wimbledon title
04 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Women's final as it happened
04 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Wimbledon women's final photos
04 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Williams sisters secure doubles
04 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Venus and Serena through to final
02 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Pundits applaud Williams sisters
02 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Williams sisters' road to the final
04 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Highlights - Venus demolishes Safina
02 Jul 09 |  Tennis
Rampant Serena crushes Azarenka
30 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Safina sets up Venus semi-final
30 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Wimbledon day eight as it happened
30 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Wimbledon: Live map
22 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Order of play
23 May 09 |  Tennis
Women's singles results
26 Jun 07 |  Results
Women's singles draw
28 Jan 10 |  Tennis
26 Jun 07 |  Results
Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis

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