Merriam-Webster tells me riffraff is a noun meaning a disreputable person; one of the common people, a member of the rabble. Serena Williams tells me riffraff is the stuff that gets in the way of her playing her best tennis.
Speaking to reporters after booking her entry into the semi-finals at Wimbledon with her 6-3, 7-5 takeout of defending champ Petra Kvitova, Williams said, "You can’t play a defending Wimbledon champion or Grand Slam champion and not elevate your game. I had to weed out the riffraff and just get serious.”
For the first week of Wimby, she always appeared in trouble.
She certainly wobbled in the third round, needing two and a half hours to see off Zheng Jie 9-7 in the third set, and then squeezing past Yaroslava Shvedova 7-5 in the Round of 16. In fact, Serena has spent longer on court (eight hours seven minutes) and lost more games (47) than any of the other semi-finalists. (wimbledon.com)
She had a heart-to-heart with her father and coach, Richard, and her quasi-coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, and they kicked the riffraff out of her head.
“I hate losing,” said Williams in her post-match news conference. “If I lose, I don’t keep the trophy."
I feel vindicated, hearing this. See, Haters, it's not about having fun and getting exercise and meeting new people. It's about the hardware.
Meanwhile, Azarenka, who's 1-7 against Serena, is just trying not to cry.
"I don't really like to look back in history because every time you step on court it's a new story," she said. "You kind of write your own history every time."
Haters, sounds like I need to hire a ghost writer for MY games.
Should Azarenka prevail, she'll reclaim the No. 1 spot.
On the men's side, it's Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic, meeting for their 27th time (their 11th in a major), but for their first-ever encounter on grass. And Andy Murray (did you see his 6-7 (5), 7-6 (6), 6-4, 7-6 (4) lung-busting, crazy shot-making quarterfinal win against David Ferrer?) takes on Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.