By Paulina Leskow, ’24
The US Open is a hardcourt tennis tournament that is held every August in Queens, New York, serving as the final Grand Slam event of the year. It follows the Australian Open in January, the French Open in May, and Wimbledon in June. While each tournament is packed full of excitement for tennis fans, the 2022 Women’s US Open was a rollercoaster of emotions. Serena Williams played her last tournament, with the crowd roaring in support and honoring her incredible career. In addition, Ons Jabeur received a much higher ranking in the world of professional tennis players despite a tough loss, and Iga Swiatek set history as the first Polish woman to win the US Open.
Anticipation for the US Open was high when Serena announced in early August that the tournament would be her last before retiring. Serena, 41, began her career at age 14, winning her first US Open in 1999 when she was just 17. Since then, she has won the US Open another five times and claimed 17 other Grand Slam titles. She also won four Olympic gold medals. Talk about an amazing career! The crowds roared for Serena as she stepped on the court, expecting to be finished in the first round due to age and injuries; however, Serena made it to the third round of the tournament, playing well but unable to defeat Aija Tomljanovic from Australia. The world of tennis lost an amazing player, a number 1-ranked professional for 319 weeks who, with her sister Venus, has transformed the game. But it will be exciting to see what Serena has in store for her future.
While Serena was making history, Ons Jabeur also had quite the tournament. Ons is one of the greatest tennis players to come out of Africa, specifically Tunisia, and without a doubt she will continue to make her country proud with her amazing play. Jabeur made it all the way to the finals of the US Open, but fell short of the title. Despite her loss, Ons increased her professional ranking from number 5 at the start of the tournament to number two after the final. She is loved around the world for her varied game and dropshots as well as her attitude, being very open to the fans, the media, and other players.
The player who ended Jabeur’s title hopes and was crowned champion of the US Open was Iga Swiatek of Poland. At just 21 years old, Iga has won three other Grand Slam titles. This tournament was not easy for Iga. She had a lot of tough games leading up to the final, but was able to persevere and take the trophy home. The number one player also made history for her nation as the first Polish tennis player to ever win the US Open. Iga is only getting started on her tennis career, and the next few years of tennis will be greatly impacted by her amazing performance.