Serena Williams was in fine form on Monday when she beat Maria Sharapova in the first round of the U.S. Open. 

Williams, who is currently ranked eighth in the world, beat her one-sided rival Sharopva in under an hour. She won in straight sets, 6-1, 6-1.

Since losing to Sharapova in that memorable 2004 Wimbledon final, our ESSENCE September cover star has now beaten her 19 times in a row.

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“It was a fun match,” Williams said after her win on Monday. 

As for Sharapova, she has never fully recovered since admitting to a failed drug test back in 2016 that had her banned from the sport for a year.

In the September issue, the world-class tennis pro opens up about everything from bouncing back her body after motherhood to investing in herself when she launched her own clothing line.

“My biggest joy is that I know that I’m doing something that I’ve always wanted to do, that I always dreamed of doing,” Williams told ESSENCE, “I just needed to do it on my own. Because when you invest in yourself, it helps your confidence, and you’ll know forever that whether you make it or not, you stepped up to the plate.”


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