In the fourth consecutive Williams-Williams Grand Slam final, Serena became the fifth woman in history to hold all four Grand Slam titles at the same time, joining Margaret Court, Maureen Connolly, Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf.
2 of 21Manny Millan for Sports Illustrated
1999 U.S. Open
At 17 and in only her second professional season, Williams defeated 18-year-old Hingis, the world's top ranked player, to become the first black woman to win a Grand Slam title since Althea Gibson in 1958. In capturing the title, Williams beat three of the top four women in the world --Hingis, Lindsay Davenport (2) and Monica Seles (4).
3 of 21Julian Finney/Getty Images
Just six weeks earlier she suffered her first loss in the opening round of a Slam at the French Open. But after being sidelined for almost a year with a foot injury and being rushed to the hospital for a pulmonary embolism, Serena won her first major in two years by defeating Agnieszka Radwanksa 6-1, 5-7, 6-2. At 30, she became the oldest woman to win Wimbledon since Martina Navratilova in 1990. And she smacked a tournament record 102 aces, to boot.
4 of 21AP
Serena came into the tournament unseeded, and capped an amazing fortnight by dismantling the top-seeded Maria Sharapova in the final.
5 of 21Bob Martin for Sports Illustrated
Serena defeated Heather Watson, her sister Venus, Victoria Azarenka, Maria
Sharapova and finally Garbine Muguruza en route to her 21st Grand Slam
title at Wimbledon in 2015. She also completed the "Serena Slam" for the
second time in her career and moved one step closer to completing the
calendar Grand Slam.
6 of 21David Callow for Sports Illustrated
2005 Australian Open
Plagued by a rib injury that forced her to leave the court and get treatment after five games, Serena fought back and eventually wore down Davenport. To reach the final, Serena had staved off two match points by Maria Sharapova in winning a semifinal 2-6, 7-5, 8-6.
7 of 21 Julian Finney/Getty Images
2013 French Open
A year earlier Serena lost in the first round to 111th-ranked French wildcard Virginie Razzano 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-3, her first opening round loss at a Slam in her career. She finally cast off her Parisian demons -- she hadn't been past the quarterfinals since 2004 -- to win her second French Open title 11 years after her first title in 2002.
8 of 21Manny Millan for Sports Illustrated
2002 U.S. Open
In an awesome display of power, Serena didn't lose a set over the two weeks and was never even taken to a tie-break in her third straight Grand Slam final win of the season.
9 of 21Al Tielemans
2014 U.S. Open
The pressure of winning No. 18 weighed on Serena all season, as she suffered early losses in the first three Slams of the year. But she rebounded to roll to the title in New York. She didn't lose a set all tournament and routed Caroline Wozniacki 6-3, 6-3 to join Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova with 18 career majors, putting her in a three-way tie for second place in the Open Era behind Steffi Graf.
10 of 21Simon Bruty for Sports Illustrated
Ranked No. 2 in the world, just behind her sister at the time, Serena denied Venus a third-straight Wimbledon title while winning her first Wimbledon crown.
11 of 21Bob Martin for Sports Illustrated
In one of the best women's matches of the decade, Serena saved match point against Elena Dementieva in the semifinals to win 6-7(4), 7-5, 8-6. She then went on to beat Venus in the final 7-6, 6-2.
12 of 21Erick W. Rasco for Sports Illustrated
2012 U.S. Open
Serena capped off a near undefeated second half of the season by winning her second straight Slam title, 15th overall, beating top-ranked Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 2-6, 7-5 in the final.
13 of 21Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
2015 Australian Open
It wasn't an easy two weeks for Serena. She had to battle through a cold and was taken to three sets by two young stars in Garbine Muguruza and Elina Svitolina in the first week. But she rolled through No. 2 Maria Sharapova for the 16th consecutive time, 6-3, 7-6 (5), to capture her 19th major title and set up a real possibility she could catch Graf's Open Era record of 22 Slams.
14 of 21Carlos M. Saavedra for Sports Illustrated
2015 French Open
Battling illness throughout the fortnight, Serena dropped the first set in
four of her six matches ahead of the final. The No. 1 seed defeated
Victoria Azarenka, Sloane Stephens, Sara Errani and Timea Bacsinszky
before meeting Lucie Safarova in the finals. In the title match, Serena
rallied from 0-2 down the in third set to win, keeping the hopes of both a
Serena Slam and calendar Grand Slam alive.
15 of 21Bob Martin for Sports Illustrated
2002 French Open
Facing her older sister Venus in a Grand Slam singles final for just the second time in her career, Serena avenged a 6-2, 6-4 loss in the 2001 U.S. Open. The sloppy championship match in Paris featured a combined 101 unforced errors.
16 of 21Darren Carroll for Sports Illustrated
2013 U.S. Open
In a tournament in which she dominated, throwing down five bagel sets in seven matches, Serena got her revenge on No. 2 Victoria Azarenka, who had beaten her in all their hard court matches this season. With her 10th title of 2013, Serena became the first woman to ever break $10 million in prize money in a single season.
17 of 21Manny Millan for Sports Illustrated
2008 U.S. Open
In a tournament in which she beat older sister Venus in two tiebreakers to advance to the semifinals, Serena didn't lose a set the entire tournament and regained the world's No. 1 ranking in the process.
18 of 21Bob Martin for Sports Illustrated
2010 Australian Open
With her 12th title, Serena tied Billie Jean King on the all-time list and continued her mastery of Melbourne by defeating Justine Henin 6-4, 3-6, 6-2. It was her fifth title Down Under.
19 of 21Simon Bruty for Sports Illustrated
With her big sister slowed by a strained abdominal muscle and a sore left thigh, Serena won for the fifth time in the last six Grand Slams. She had lost to Justine Henin-Hardenne in the semifinals of the 2003 French Open.
20 of 21Bob Martin for Sports Illustrated
2009 Australian Open
Serena retook the No. 1 ranking in destructive fashion, beating third-ranked Dinara Safina 6-0, 6-3 in 59 minutes. Said the embarrassed Safina, "I was just a ballboy on the court today."
21 of 21Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Without dropping a set all tournament, Serena beat Vera Zvonareva 6-3, 6-2 in the final to pass Billie Jean King on the all-time list. During the trophy ceremony she spotted King in the stands. "Hey Billie, I got you!" she joked. She also hit a then-tournament record 89 aces during the fortnight, a mark she would shatter two years later.
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