Venus Williams once again proves to be something to talk about
by Alex Dimitrov
The week at the Acura Classic began with Venus Williams winning and ended very much in the same fashion. For the third straight year Williams captured the title, something no other woman has ever accomplished. The championship match against Jelena Dokic mimicked Williams's semifinal massacre as she quickly closed out the first set 6-2 in 29 minutes. Dokic was rumored to have been sick all night with a stomach virus. She had been treated by a physician yet was still reported to have been vomiting prior to the match. Tournament officials weren't sure she would even play minutes before the final was scheduled to start. Despite feeling ill, Jelena pushed on in the second set, holding to take a 1-0 lead. Venus, while acknowledging she wasn't playing her best tennis, raced past her to a 4-1 lead. Even after breaking Venus in the next game, Dokic looked fatigued and at times disinterested. Williams easily closed out the match in 55 minutes on her second match point.
"It's really nice to keep coming back to this tournament. It's real familiar," said Williams after the 6-2 6-2 victory. When talking about her play she said, "I always critique my game. I'm the toughest on myself. It's a real mental battle for me." When asked what she would do with her third Acura vehicle, Venus smiled and filled the press in on her "4 or 5" speeding tickets. She confessed she didn't even know if she would be able to drive it. "The insurance is expensive, especially for dangerous drivers like me," she joked. Venus also admitted driving around with sister Serena, who thinks Venus's car is "outdated." "She's a good driver, though," said Venus.
After her press conference Venus was escorted out in a golf cart and taken to her hotel room. As I was pulling in the media parking lot I saw Venus (whose room is right near the press parking) playing volleyball with her three sisters. She was radiating with joy -- cracking jokes, laughing loudly, and grinning proudly. Just minutes ago she had talked about starting to count her titles "now that the number has gotten bigger." And why shouldn't she? She's got a great career to look forward to, a wonderful sister to share it with, and an unconventional father to keep things interesting. As the tennis world looks ahead to the US Open, one can't help but see a Williams victory.
The views expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect those of this magazine.
Last updated 5 August 2002