The new World No.1 & US Open champion Angelique Kerber might just have started a new momentum shift in Women’s tennis after ending an astonishing 186-week long reign of Serena Williams atop the WTA rankings.
In doing so, not only did she become first German to become No.1 since Steffi Graf, she also did her legendary compatriot a huge favour by not allowing Serena to beat Graf’s now tied record 186-week reign as No.1.
The left-handed Kerber did so on the back of a phenomenal 2016 which she started ranked 10th in the world. She would go on to reach 3 Grand Slam finals and win 2 of them to establish her dominance on the tour this year.
Surprisingly, the 28-year-old’s remarkable turn around of fortunes has seen her become the oldest woman in history to lead the rankings for the first time. As they say, better late than never.
Let’s take a peek at some of Kerber’s highlights this year (in chronological order)
#10 A sign of things to come at Brisbane
Kerber was one of the ‘silent’ members of the top 10 coming into the Australian Open but showed the first signs that she was ready to step up when she stormed to the final at Brisbane International – one of the warm-up tournaments before the year’s first Grand Slam.
Kerber who was seeded 4th at the event beat the likes of Camila Giorgi, Madison Brengle, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Carla Suárez Navarro for the loss of just 1 set before falling to Victoria Azarenka in the final. To be fair, she had never beaten Azarenka in 5 outings before this match.
Though she did not win the tournament, Kerber showed signs of being in peak form and was being talked up as a dark horse for the Australian Open.