Italian superstar Sara Errani plays Danish native Caroline Wozniacki at the U.S. Open on September 2.
Here’s what you should know about the 27-year-old who is steadily advancing in the tournament.
1. She Beat Venus
On August 29, Errani, number 13 in the world, was victorious over Venus Williams.
Errani told the NY Times how the match played out:
These things happen. I was just trying to keep focus also in the second, but I stop a bit. I was a bit tired. I stop my legs a bit, not pushing too much, and she was coming in. So after the second, I just tried to relax a bit and tried to push again my body 100 percent.
2. She Silenced the Open Crowd
In the video above, during her aforementioned match against Venus, Errani had enough of the cheers for her opponent.
She put her hand to her ear and then pointed at the spectators.
She explained her actions by saying:
Five-all in the tiebreak, I heard the crowd. Never hear the crowd like that strong. I was shaking for the crowd. [It] was unbelievable good. I think I will remember that moment forever. Of course, in the point after, I was nervous. I was like now you don’t scream, like if they didn’t scream. But of course the crowd was for her, totally for her. I don’t know why I did like that.
— ThePostGame.com (@Post_Game) August 30, 2014
In an interview with the Washington Post, she said,
“The crowd was amazing. Even if it was not for me, it was for her,” Errani said. “But to hear that scream of all the people, I think I will remember always.”
3. She’s a Grand Slam Winner in Doubles
— WTA (@WTA) August 11, 2014
At 2014’s Wimbledon, her and her doubles’ partner, Roberta Vinci, become the fifth women’s team in tennis history to own all four major titles.
Errani credits the fact that Vinci is her best friend as part of the reason for their success.
“Being close friends help us a lot in the court. She’s absolutely my best friend…when I’m down she help me, and when she’s down I help her. We trust each other, we help each other, we stay together every day in every tournament, with our coaches and their families,” she told Oregonlive.
4. She’s Italian
Born in Bologna, Italy, she began playing tennis at age 5.
At just 12 years old. her father sent her to pursue the sport in Florida at the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy.
“My father asked me if I wanted to go and I said yes: in my childish mind I just thought when I’d come back I would be the strongest of all. I did a farewell party at school, said goodbye to my friends, I was happy. But when I found myself on the plane with my mother, I got a bit scared. And when she left after a week and left me alone, I went right into a panic,” she told Vanity Fair.
According to biography.com, she “was named the best Italian player under 18 when she was 15 years old, and kept that title until she was 18.”
Her family remains close to her. In fact, her brother, Davide, who introduced her to the sport, works as her manager.
5. She Has a Book Out Named After Her Favorite Racket
— alessandro cattelan (@alecattelan) September 2, 2014
To name the book about her career so far, Errani called upon the moniker of her cherished racket, which she lovingly refers to as Excalibur.
In the book, Errani states, “I will no longer leave the raquet for the rest of my career. I had never had a similar feeling. I felt unbeatable. It seemed that I had the magic sword. It was like the sword of King Arthur and I called my raquet Excalibur. With the new raquet I felt I had a new gear. I had more power.”
Ubitennis reported that she commented on the work’s origin, saying, “The idea to write a book on my last two years came to mind for the first time some years ago when my father began collecting some photos. It is not a biography but a book on the two most exciting years of my career. This book was the best way to remember the two last years of my career. In the future I would like to write my biography but there is plenty of time to do that in the future.”