Step aside, Steffi Graf. Serena Williams stands alone in tennis history.
Williams defeated her sister, Venus, 6-4, 6-4, Saturday in the women's final of the Australian Open to capture her 23rd Grand Slam singles title, passing Graf (22) for the most all time in the Open Era.
It was an impressive run for Serena, as she reached the final match of the tournament without dropping a set before taking down Venus, a seven-time Grand Slam singles champion in her own right. But it wasn't just breaking the tie with Graf that made this victory so incredible.
A look at Serena's success by the numbers:
Serena captured her seventh Australian Open title, becoming the first woman in the Open Era to win at least seven titles in multiple Grand Slams. She has also won seven times at Wimbledon, six times at the U.S. Open and three times at the French Open.
No other woman has more than four Australian Open titles in the Open Era.
The rivalry between the Williams sisters is a bit one-sided.
Serena is now 10-5 against Venus in head-to-head meetings in Grand Slam matches. In Grand Slam finals, Venus is 2-7 when playing Serena and 5-1 when playing anyone else. Serena has also won eight of the past nine overall matches against her sister. Of course, this only proves what we already knew — it's really difficult to beat Serena.
This year's Australian Open marked Serena's 66th Grand Slam appearance, meaning she has won roughly one out of every three Grand Slam tournaments she has entered in her career.
Graf was better than Serena in terms of Grand Slam efficiency, winning her 22 Grand Slam singles titles in 53 appearances. Serena, though, has an advantage in longevity. Graf hit 22 in a 12-year span from 1987 to 1999. Serena reached 23 over the course of nearly two decades from 1999 to 2017.
After world No. 1 Angelique Kerber fell to Coco Vandeweghe in the fourth round of the Australian Open, the door opened for Serena to reclaim her No. 1 ranking, and she took advantage.
Serena fell to No. 2 after losing in the semifinals of last year's U.S. Open, ending a ridiculous run of 186 consecutive weeks at No. 1. She will look to begin another streak of sustained excellence and catch Graf for most weeks at No. 1 all time. Serena is at 309 total weeks while Graf finished her career at 377.
The only thing Serena doesn't own? The all-time record for Grand Slam singles titles — regardless of era.
Margaret Court won 24 Grand Slam singles titles from 1960 to 1973 with 13 of those titles coming prior to the start of the Open Era in 1968. Even at age 35, Serena appears to still have much quality tennis left in her. One or two more Grand Slams? Easily within the realm of possibility.
Next up: the French Open at the end of May. If we've learned anything from watching Serena, we should know not to doubt her drive to be the greatest of all time.