The No. 1 female tennis player in the world, Serena Williams, will play her friend Caroline Wozniacki in the US Open finals today. Williams is going for her 18th Grand Slam title. Wozniacki is going for her first. While the women are only 8 years apart (Williams is 32, Wozniacki is 24), those eight years of experience on the court is like 28 in tennis years. Sometimes Williams plays the big sister in her personal relationship with Wozniacki. When Wozniacki’s fiancé, golfer Rory McIlroy, broke off their engagement earlier this year, Williams called Wozniacki and told her: “…it’s not the end of the world. You know, you’re a baby, you’re 23. Things will look up.”
That’s nice. But Serena Williams isn’t known for being nice on the court. Ask Kim Clijsters who was Williams’ opponent back when Williams profanely threatened a line judge during the 2009 US Open. This is the first time Wozniacki has had to compete with Williams for a Grand Slam title. Williams won’t be comforting her friend out on the court at Flushing Meadows. Serena isn’t sentimental–just look at her record against her sister Venus in majors. Serena will hug Caroline afterwards–if Serena wins, that is–but from the first serve to the last Wozniacki will be looking across the net at a stranger–and a mean one. If Serena Williams calls Caroline Wozniacki a baby again today, it won’t be to cheer her up.