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Grand Slam Fact:10 Interesting Trivia about Women's Grand Slam Finals

Australian Open 2021 is finally near its concluding stages after months of speculations, quarantine, acrimonious protocols, and some mind-boggling games. 

With world no.3, Naomi Osaka prevailing against the 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, the Japanese is set to face Jennifer Brady at the Rod Laver Arena on Sunday.

Jennifer Brady may not be closer to Osaka as per the world rankings, but her acts have substantiated that she won't give up without a battle.

However, we at Sportco present you with some iconic moments in the Women's Australian Open finals.

Grand Slam Fact #1: One sister taking down another!

In the 2003 Australian Open finals, the Williams sisters, Serena Williams and Venus Williams were up against each other for the fourth straight time. The last three finale meetings observed Serena defeating her sister in the 2002 French Open, Wimbledon, and the U.S Open in the same year.

However, this time was no different as Serena beat her again and became the fifth woman in history to hold all four major slams.

Grand Slam Fact  #2: The Fabulous Four of Tennis!

These four women tennis legends hold the record for the most number of appearances in Women's Singles Grand Slam Finals. American former World No. 1, Chris Evert heads the list with 34 appearances followed by her fellow American compatriot, Serena Williams with 33 appearances. 

Third on this list is Martina Navratilova with 32 finals appearances, and lastly, we have the charismatic German Tennis Legend, Steffi Graf with 31 appearances.

Grand Slam Fact  #3: The rise of the new American in the 1980s!

In 1981, the Australian Open was the last Grand Slam of the year, played on grass with both the participants playing with a wooden racquet.

Martinova Navratilova had grabbed a lot of deference as she had recently become an American citizen and also revealed her sexual orientation publicly. Her opponent, Chris Evert was the world no.1 at that time, but that didn't stop her from winning her first major title as an American and her first as a gay athlete.

Grand Slam Fact  #4: The sweet fruit from a bitter rivalry!

The Monica Seles - Steffi Graf rivalry was one of the best things happening in the 1990s, and the 1993 Australian Open is the premium justification for that. Monica Seles entered into the finals, winning six of her seven past Grand Slams and her only loss came against Graf.

A grievous 6-2, 6-1 loss in the 1992 Wimbledon finals being the outcome of their most recent meeting. It was Seles' third  Australian title and her record in the Australian Open was 28-0. Being just 19 years of age, she already clinched eight major titles but unfortunately, she could not add more to her distinctions after the tragic stabbing incident.

Grand Slam Fact #5: "I don't know how I won today"

Jennifer Capriati's paved a fairytale comeback in the 2002 Australian Open finals as she was against Martina Hingis, who had opportunities on three separate occasions to take the trophy home.

Capriati had some emotional moments in the game too. She was disputing with the chair umpire over a call by the linesman. However, she continued to show resilience and came out as a champion.

Grand Slam Fact # 6: 'Court' wins the Australian court at 17!

At just the age of 17, Margaret Court captured the 1960 Australian Open title.

Beating Jan Lehane 7-5, 6-2 in the final, it was the first of her 24 singles Grand Slam titles and the first of her 11 Australian Open victories.

However, though she won the women's singles, she was young enough to play the girls' singles too, which she lost surprisingly.

Grand Slam Fact #7: Henin battling cramps!

It was a quarter-final but Justin Henin-Hardenne was as courageous as she would be in a final, succeeding against American Lindsay Davenport in 43-break points holding game, designating Henin's appetite for the win.

Grand Slam Fact #8: 'A leap' but not just of faith!

Every sports fanatic knows that rankings do not mean everything, but they do have some relevance in the sporting world. Serena Williams was unfortunate to miss two grand slams in 2006 due to multiple issues. However, her victory in the 2007 Australian Open final against Maria Sharapova, 6-1 and 6-2 showed the world that she was back, jumping from being ranked 81 to 14.

Grand Slam Fact #9: Owning 1988!

Steffi Graff was at her absolute best in 1988, winning all the Grand slams of the calendar year, including the gold medal at the Olympics, but the cherry on the cake was a triumph against her arch-rival, Chris Evert, in the Australian Open finals.

Grand Slam Fact #10: 17 and champion!

In 1997, Martina Hingis became the youngest woman to emerge victorious with a Grand Slam singles title. In fact, just months before, she became the youngest woman to win any Grand Slam title, as she and Helena Sukova won Wimbledon in 1996.

After having lived for 16 years and three months, Hingis stormed through the fixtures, and shocked Mary Pierce emphatically, 6-2, 6-2, in the final.

Bonus Trivia: A mother's win!

After Kim Clijsters managed a win in the Australian Open in 2011, she told a packed Rod Laver Arena: “I finally feel like you guys can call me ‘Aussie Kim’."

Australian fans had embraced the Belgian as one of their own when she dated local favorite Lleyton Hewitt early in her career.

The reputed Belgian who did not drop a set as she swept into the final defeated China’s Li Na in an entertaining 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 title match to win the Australian Open for the first time, an emotional victory given her affection for the country.

Clijsters’ victory also made her the first mother to win the title since Australian Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1977.

 

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