Reilly Opelka says that Serena Williams is the best tennis player «by a mile» and her sister Venus Williams is the second best player in tennis history. Serena, 40, is a 23-time Grand Slam singles champion.
On the other hand, Venus has seven Grand Slam singles titles. With Serena retiring at this year’s US Open, Opelka feels that she is on the Mount Rushmore of sports and that she should be mentioned in the same sentence as LeBron James, Michael Jordan and Cristiano Ronaldo.
«Venus will become the second greatest tennis player of all time,» Opelka told the Red Bull website. “Serena is first by a mile. You have to put it there with [Michael] jordan and lebron [James] either [Cristiano] Ronaldo.
I practice with both; They live right down the street from me. They hit the ball as well as anyone. Serena and Venus played in the toughest era of women’s tennis and changed the game. But they still love tennis and winning tennis matches.
There is no other reason for Serena to play. I know Venus loves it too. Serena has so many records; she is already known as one of the greatest athletes of all time. I think that buzz of winning has to be the only reason she keeps playing.”
Opelka on tennis greats slowly approaching retirement
Serena has one more tournament to play and it wouldn’t be a surprise if Venus also pulled out in the near future. On the men’s side, Roger Federer is now 41 years old, while Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are over 35 years old.
«They’re dating, but it’s crazy,» Opelka said. “It’s all I’ve ever known, it’s all most of us have ever known. I’m curious to see what it’s like. [The list of winners] It will be more distributed and I think it will help the sport.
It will attract more attention to more countries. All Greece goes to see tennis once [Stefanos] Tsitsipas wins a Slam, and all of Italy will follow when Matteo [Berrettini] win one. I think it will be more exciting.”