On Monday, Danka Kovinic of Montenegro will be in an unfamiliar spot in the tennis spotlight on the sport’s biggest stage when she could ruin Serena Williams’s US Open retirement party.
Since she turned pro in 2010, Kovinic hasn’t broken into the top 40 in the world rankings and still hasn’t won her first WTA Tour title. But on Monday, the OKBet tennis world will be focused on the 27-year-old for a few hours.
If she beats Williams and Kovinic in the first round, she will get the fame that has passed her by during her 12-year career, which hasn’t been very exciting.
Many think the 23-time Grand Slam winner is the best tennis player ever. Her name would always have linked to her.
For a short time, the 80th-ranked Kovinic would go from being a nobody to almost certainly being the most famous player in the sport.
No matter what Kovinic does in the future, she will always be known as the answer to the question “Who was the previous person to beat Serena Williams?” on pub quiz nights or Trivia Pursuit.
Williams, who is 40 years old, told Vogue in early August that she was “evolving away from tennis,” but she never said for sure that the U.S. Open would be her last tournament.
The tennis world
The tennis world is getting ready for a huge retirement party at Flushing Meadows, and it’s hoped that the party will go on past the first day of the Billie Jean King Tennis Center’s opening.
Kovinic, who is unknown and has spent most of her career working hard on outside courts, small tournaments, and qualifiers, will walk into a boiling pot.
Most of the nearly 25,000 people watching the match on Arthur Ashe Center Court, the world’s biggest tennis stadium. Also, will cheer for the tennis legend playing against her.
Williams is playing in her 21st US Open. She has won the title six times, but not since 2014. She will have different feelings but be with people she knows.
Kovinic, on the other hand, has only won two matches at Flushing Meadows. She beat Aleksandra Krunic of Serbia in the first round in 2015 and Lisette Faith Cabrera of Australia in 2020.
A case of stage fright
If Kovinic has stage fright, she doesn’t show it. Instead, she takes advantage of the chance by posting on Instagram and Twitter, “WHAT A MOMENT. “I’m looking forward to it.”
Williams was number one in the world for 319 weeks, but when she got to New York, she was ranked below 600 and not a seed.
She only plays now when she feels like it. This season, she’s only going to three tournaments. She had only won one match since June 2021, when she lost in the last 16 at Roland Garros.
Few people think Williams will end her career with a fairytale run to a record-tying 24th Grand Slam title. Even fewer would bet on the aggressive baseliner from Cetinje, Kovinic, to beat her.
Emma Raducanu triumphed at the US Open last year and is one of the few players. She has played them recently (she beat Williams last week in Cincinnati and lost to Kovinic in the second match of the Australian Open). I won’t make any predictions.
Raducanu, a British teenager, said, “When I played her (Williams) last week, I couldn’t believe who was on the different side of the bench because I learned that if I did, my mind would probably start going.” “It’s very, very difficult.
“I’ll know how Danka feels in a situation like that. I remember that Kovinic was strong and that she stayed with you and punched you back. She is happy to run and cheer. I believe it will be a great matchup.”