By Randy Walker
The 2014 Australian Open will not be the site where Serena Williams will achieve the milestone of her 18th major singles title.
The world No. 1 had her 25-match win streak snapped and was eliminated in a shock upset by No. 14-seeded Ana Ivanovic 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 in the fourth round of the Australian Open Sunday.
Just moments after the loss, USA Today tennis writer Doug Robson tweeted that Patrick Mouratoglou told him that Williams was suffering from a back injury the last few days that hampered her play. Reporters presented this information to Williams in her post-match press conference and, after labeling her coach “a snitch,” she expanded on her injury after first saying she did not want to use it as an excuse, wanting to give credit to Ivanovic.
“I know I could play so much better than I did today. I could play 10 times better than I did today,” Williams said, while offering to give credit to Ivanovic whenever she could. “It was all Ana today. I thought she played really well”
Ivanovic, the former world No. 1 from Serbia who was 0-4 against Williams in her career entering the match, went for broke for much of the match, especially in the final set where she belted return of serves with authority and served without fear.
The loss, the first for Williams since losing to Vika Azrenka in the final of Cincinnati in August, prevents her from tying U.S. tennis icons Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova with 18 major singles titles won in a career. Williams still also trails all-time major singles title winner Margaret Court, who won 24 major singles titles in her career. With her third-round win over Daniela Hantuchova Williams won her 61st career singles match at the Australian Open, surpassing the record number that Court won at her native Grand Slam in her career.