'Less pressure': Serena Williams' big advantage at US Open

·Sports Reporter
·2-min read
Serena Williams (pictured) waiting for a trophy ceremony.
Pam Shriver thinks Serena Williams (pictured) could feel less pressure to win her 24th Grand Slam title with no crowd. (Getty Images)

Serena Williams could feel less pressure to win her record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title without fans in the arena, according to a tennis great.

TV analyst Pam Shriver, a former World No.3 and five-time US Open doubles champ, said the US Open will be different for athletes with a silent stadium due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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But Shriver feels the unusual circumstances could help Williams feel less pressure.

"Without the crowds there, I wouldn't be surprised if she actually feels a little less pressure," Shriver told the BBC.

Williams has lost her last four finals, including the 2018 and 2019 US Open finals.

But she is still confident she can equal Margaret Court’s 24 Grand Slam titles.

Barty and Andreescu withdraw from US Open

However, due to the coronavirus, many top women’s tennis players have withdrawn from the tournament.

This includes Aussie World No.1 Ash Barty, World No.2 Simona Halep and reigning champ Bianca Andreescu.

But Shriver does not think this devalues the tournament.

"I don't think it devalues the tournament," Shriver added.

Winner Bianca Andreescu of Canada and Serena Williams of the United States during the trophy presentation ceremony.
Winner Bianca Andreescu of Canada and Serena Williams of the United States during the trophy presentation ceremony. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)

"Anybody that comes through and wins seven rounds, under the circumstances of living in a quarantine bubble, unable to do your normal thing you usually do at a major, it is going to be an incredible performance."

Official also said they were pleased with the players that had committed to the main draw.

"As far as our field, in context of the times and how different the world is, I couldn't be happier. It's exceeded our expectations," United States Tennis Association chief executive Mike Dowse said.

"At the end of the day it's our fans we are here to serve. They're going to see some unbelievable world class tennis."

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