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Beyond the Baseline

Daily Bagel: Serena Williams discusses prospect of 'Serena Slam'

The Daily Bagel is your dose of the interesting reporting, writing and quipping from around the Internet.

• Video: One look back at the 2012 Australian Open. Forget "Happy Slam," they should rename it the "Wacky Slam."

• Doug Robson catches up with Serena Williams to discuss the prospect of winning the "Serena Slam" this year. She also talks about the long road back to her current form, which took some motivation from her family.

Arriving at Wimbledon last June, Williams was reeling. Searching for answers, she brought French coach Patrick Mouratoglou into the fold. She also got advice from her half-sister, Isha Price, who told her she had to move on.

"Isha took me aside -- I was really upset -- and she told me, 'You've got to let it go.' So that's when I was finally able to let it go -- two years later at Wimbledon," Williams said.

"I think my mom put it perfectly," she adds. "She said in an interview if I didn't win that (Wimbledon final) she thought I would have went crazy. So I agree. That was definitely a big turning point for me."

• Get a tissue out before you read this one: Ross Hutchins, who begins chemotherapy for Hodgkin's lymphoma on Thursday, talks about how supportive his best friend, Andy Murray, has been throughout the ordeal.

• Sloane Stephens survived a gutsy effort from fellow American teen Lauren Davis to win 6-3, 4-6, 7-5 and advance to the semifinals in Hobart. I know it's a lot to ask, but if you have a few hours to set aside, you should watch a replay of their match (or at least the third set), which is available here. You'll walk away with a lot of respect for Davis.

• The ATP catches up with Benjamin Balleret and Guillaume Couillard, the two men who played the 70-point tiebreaker at a ITF Futures event in Florida earlier this week. Nice to see them so good-humored about it.

“Neither of us sensed the first set would last so long. We were both really tight, because we know each other so well. We didn’t want to lose it. When we switched ends during the tie-break, with the score in the 20s and 30s, we were laughing.”

• Sam Stosur is getting a lot of unsolicited advice about her woes in Australia. Margaret Court says Stosur needs to "go fishing" for a while, which is a bit odd considering the Australian swing actually does come after an extended offseason break. If that doesn't work, Stosur can always settle in for a Modern Family marathon.

• Bernard Tomic has been banned from Australia's first-round Davis Cup tie. Sounds like he's now sending a message to captain Patrick Rafter that the team can forget about his services for the year.

• The Grandstand examines the ATP's Generation Next: Grigor Dimitrov, Ryan Harrison, Milos Raonic and Tomic.

• Non-tennis: Tina Fey gets 7 Minutes in Heaven.
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