Viola Davis leads the way in a different kind of battle for the #1 spot in the women’s tennis rankings, this time at No. 1.
The 6-foot-10 Davis, who was crowned the 2016 US Open champion this past Sunday, is up by six spots from the beginning of the year. Her rise comes at the expense of another one of the sport’s biggest stars, Serena Williams.
Williams has led all of the sport’s female players in the world in match play this season, as she has won 18 straight matches at the top of the tour.
But Davis is winning more matches than Serena at this stage of the season, the two are tied for second at 33 and 13 respectively, despite Davis having nearly three more service breaks than is the record for Williams.
The reason for the difference in her game is clear. She’s the superior court player by far, but she still can’t win. It was this that drew the ire of many of Serena’s critics earlier this season, who questioned whether she wasn’t better than Davis.
In fact, Davis is the best player in the world based on overall game-play, something no one disputes. But she’s not the best pure player, even though, as we saw in the 2016 U.S. Open final against Serena, she was the superior player in every aspect of the game.
She isn’t, however, the best overall player. That honor belongs to Venus Williams, who finished with a record-tying 36 aces in winning the 2016 U.S. Open.
However, it’s Williams’ ability to improve at the highest levels that separates her from Davis. In turn, it is Davis’ ability to improve at the lowest levels that separates her from everyone else in the sport.
I’ll let Davis do the