IBM’s Watson has studied 22 years’ worth of information to provide deeper meaning into Serena Williams’ longevity
Serena Williams is part of the furniture at Wimbledon, as associated with the famous tournament as the grass itself. But after all these years, aged 36, she will return to hunt down another championship next week.
Ken Rosewall’s playing career lasted from 1951 until 1978, when he was 44, and he reached the Wimbledon finals aged 39, but tennis today is far more physically demanding, especially if you’re playing against a supreme athlete.
So how is Williams still in the hunt for Grand Slams after becoming a mother when, for example, a fellow American sports hero in Tiger Woods is showing signs of decline?
They both won their first Grand Slam or major, respectively, in the late 1990s on home soil, Williams at the US Open and Woods at The Masters. Williams now has an Open-era record 23 and Woods has 14, behind only Jack Nicklaus, yet only the tennis player seems likely to add to her tally.
Williams’ excellence, 19 years after her first title, is partly due to spending a shorter amount of time on the court than her rivals, and a technique that prevents demanding rallies via a power serve and groundstrokes.