Just over one week after Serena Williams captured her first singles title since becoming a mother, she fell in the third round of the Australian Open to Qiang Wang.
Williams was fresh off her win at the 2020 ASB Classic, where she beat Camila Giorgi. However, she only lasted until the third round before falling to the Chinese superstar.
Williams won in the first round over Anastasia Potapova (6-0, 6-3) and then over Tamara Zidanšek in the second round (6-2, 6-3).
She couldn’t escape Qiang Wang, though, who beat Williams (6-4, 6-7, 7-5). Wang also beat Pauline Parmentier (7-6, 6-3) and Fiona Ferro (6-1, 6-2).
Who is Qiang Wang?
Casual tennis fans might be wondering who Qiang Wang is.
She is a Chinese tennis star from Tianjin, who has won two titles in her career on the WTA Tour to this point, as well as 13 singles titles and one doubles title on the ITF Tour.
Most tennis fans got to know her very well when she reached the quarterfinals of the 2019 US Open, and if her win over Serena Williams tells people anything, it is that 2020 might be an even bigger year for the 28-year-old star.
After reaching the quarterfinals in 2019 at the US Open, she climbed to the 12th spot in the world rankings, the second-highest player in history following only Li Na, who reached the No. 2 spot in 2014.
Qiang Wang has been playing tennis since she was nine and won the Juniors Championship in China for two consecutive years (2006, 2007). She then joined the ITF Women’s Circuit in 2007, at the age of 15.
Her first competition in a Grand Slam event came in 2014 at the US Open, where she made it to the second round.
Four years later, she won the gold medal at the Asian Games in 2018 in singles action.
This is her sixth straight entry into the Australian Open and her best showing yet. She was knocked out in the first round three times and the second round once, and the third round once. This is her first trip to the fourth round.
Outside of the 2019 US Open (which she has competed in for six straight years) quarterfinal finish, this is her best tournament in a Grand Slam tournament.
Qiang Wang next plays Ons Jabeur in the fourth round on Friday.