serena williams defeated li na of china, 2-6, 6-3, 6-0 to win the wta championships in istanbul, turkey. the world #1 capped off the best year in her illustrious career. she became the eighth woman to win 11 or more titles in a year, and the first since martina hingis won 12 titles in 1997.
williams said later, "it was an awesome year of tennis." the victory brought williams' prize money total for the year to $12,385,572. the only player, male or female, to earn more in a year was world #1 novak djokovic of serbia. he won $12,803,737 last year, and $12,619,803 in 2011.
williams finished 2013 with a 78-4 record. she ends the year #1 for the third time, after doing so in 2002 and 2009. her incredible season included two majors - the french open and the u.s. open - giving her a total of 17 majors. williams' remarkable winning percentage of .951 is the best on the tour since martina navratilova had an historical 86-1 record and .989 percentage in 1983.
despite her amazing year, williams remains a perfectionist. in fact, she said she would have preferred to win more majors. "i live to win slams. i mean, obviously, i'm so excited to be the wta champion. i can't say it's the best season. i can't say it's not the best. i don't know. i really don't know."
the thrilling final showcased two players over 30 for the first time in the championships' 43-year history. williams is 32, and li is 31, yet both women are playing the best tennis of their careers. li said, "after a set and a half, i was feeling no more energy left. it's a tough tournament, because i played five days in a row. every opponent is in the top eight, so you never have an easy match in this tournament."
the year-end championships features the top eight women in the world, including two alternates, ranked nine and ten. williams is the first to repeat as wta champion since justin henin in 2007. the african-american won the event for the fourth time in her career, victorious in her 2001 tourney debut, as well as 2009 and 2012.
- mark j. tuggle
- harlem, usa
- same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. firstname.lastname@example.org.