Serena Williams is trying to win her second French Open and first since 2002. (Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Serena Williams extended her win streak to 27 straight matches on Friday, defeating No. 26 Sorana Cirstea 6-0, 6-2 in the third round of the French Open. Her current run, which dates to March, is the longest of the 31-year-old's career. Williams doesn't pay much attention to it, though.
"After every match I'm reminded," she said. "And, ironically enough, I forget about it as soon as it's done."
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Last year, Williams came into the French Open having won 17 straight matches, only to lose in the first round to Virginie Razzano. This year has seen a much more focused and calm Williams, who's been treating every point as if it's a match point regardless of the scoreline. She's dropped only six games in three matches.
"I don't think it's about a winning streak," said Williams, who plays No. 15 Roberta Vinci in the fourth round Sunday. "I think it's about winning important matches and winning the right matches at the right time."
So what has she been doing to stay relaxed off the court? Social media offers the answer. Last week, she tweeted a picture of herself taking a painting class. This week, she tweeted the final result.
Williams said she would have loved to have taken lessons from the much-beloved Bob Ross, who was famous for his tranquil art shows on PBS.
"I love his personality," she said. "I love how he makes shading and he does like a lot of artwork. It seems to be like he could work with real beginners like me, seems very basic, like, wow, I can do this too kind of thing. That would have been nice."
Ross died in 1995, but his spirit lives on through YouTube. The thought of Williams sitting at her laptop soaking in Ross' dulcet tones isn't far-fetched when you think about it.