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Arguably the greatest female tennis player of all time, World No. 1 Serena Williams has come a long way since growing up in Compton (her neighborhood was so dangerous, her sister was fatally shot by a gang member while riding with her boyfriend in his SUV). The 31-year-old tennis dynamo currently holds the record for the most Major singles, doubles, and mixed doubles titles, and just so happens to be the only player to have achieved two Career Golden Slams. But the 2012 U.S. Open defending champion insists it’s not as easy as she makes it look.
“No tournament is ever easy, especially being in the position I am in. The tournament starts and they expect you to win,” she says. “For me it’s always about constantly improving and never saying ‘I did great and I can be satisfied.’ I did great today, but what can I do better? What can I improve on? That’s what I always strive for.”
From rising stars like Victoria Azarenka to familiar fan favorites like Serena Williams, here are 12 superstar athletes set to dominate on the court this year
From rising stars to returning champs, here are 12 superstar athletes you should know before the first match on Monday.