Last season turned out to be one full of surprises and somehow unexpected outcomes regarding the ranking at the top. While in the men`s singles circuit, it was Andy Murray who outpassed Djokovic at the end of a stunning race, when it comes to women`s singles, Serena Williams saw her position stolen by Angelique Kerber. It`s a fair assumption to make that in the early stages of 2016 almost no one saw those outcomes coming.

With the dust settled and a new season on the roll, Serena Williams has quite a shot to reclaim her old status in Melbourne.

This time it`ll be Kerber in the position of dealing with pressure and this new role might not suit her well. In Brisbane and later in Sydney the German seemed a bit under the water while playing.

Serena and Kerber seized the last season

Back in 2016, Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber seized the Grand Slam scene with at least one of them featuring in every Grand Slam final. In Melbourne Kerber stunned Serena, but the American took her revenge at Wimbledon. At the French Open Serena cruised to the final eventually being upset by Garbine Muguruza. For Kerber, the clay in Paris was too much as she failed to get past the early stages. The German bounced back at the US Open and claimed her 2nd Grand Slam of her career defeating Pliskova in the final.

Once again, Serena succumbed in the US Open semis as well as in 2015.

For a while now, Serena has been focusing only on the big tournaments of the WTA calendar. Given her age, it`s the right move especially having some injuries making her run even harder.

Serena needs a blistering run in Melbourne

When it comes to career achievements, Serena Williams is by far a living star.

Her only milestone yet to be reached is probably another Grand Slam title in order to get past Steffi Graf. In Melbourne, Serena also might surpass Kerber in the ranking. According to the official WTA ranking, Kerber currently has 8875 while Serena stands behind with 7080. The math is simple for the American as she needs to reach the final to give her a chance to regain the world no.

1 spot. If Kerber reaches the quarterfinals, the mandatory condition for Serena to regain the highest summit is to win the tournament.

But for her, the world no. 1 ranking might not be that important at the moment although a better ranking might give her an easier path on the further WTA event of the year.