Serena Williams is determined to retain her US Open crown at Flushing Meadows and end her near 12-month wait to pick up an 18th Grand Slam title.
The 32-year-old American and world number one has endured a difficult 2014 to date with injury and illness issues hampering her attempts to secure another major title.
Williams lost out to Ana Ivanovic at the Australian Open, before crashing out of the French Open at the second-round stage against Garbine Muguruza of Spain and then lost in the third round at Wimbledon at the hands of Alize Cornet.
Williams missed almost a month of action following Wimbledon as she had been struck down by a virus, but then returned in style in the Bank of the West Classic hard court tournament in Stanford as she defeated German Angelique Kerber 7-6 (7-1) 6-3 in the final on Sunday.
It has left Williams’ confidence on a high looking ahead to the US Open and she is looking to register her first Grand Slam success of the year.
“The summer tournaments, I’m trying to do my best, not in the tournaments but in each match more than anything, just try to improve with each match,” Williams said.
“As for chasing the 18th one, that thing has been avoiding me. Hopefully one day I’ll catch up with it.”
Williams will continue her preparations at the Rogers Cup this week where she will face the winner of Monica Puig and Samantha Stosur’s first round tie after being handed a bye.