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In a match up that feels fully cinematic, tennis greats Serena Williams (opens in new tab) and Roger Federer will face off on the court for the first time ever tomorrow in a match at the Hopman Cup in Perth.
Between them, Williams (opens in new tab) and Federer have won 43 grand slam singles titles. They're both considered to be among the greatest players of all time. But, thanks to the gendered nature of tennis match-ups, the two legends have never played each other. Until now.
Now, it's worth noting that this isn't a full-on recreation of the 1973 man-versus-woman competition between Billie Jean King (opens in new tab) and Bobby Riggs (which was dramatized in last year's Battle of the Sexes (opens in new tab), starring Emma Stone (opens in new tab) as King and Steve Carrell as Riggs). The New Year's Day match between Williams and Federer will be a doubles game, with each of them teaming up with another player of the opposite sex for the match. Williams will play alongside her US teammate, Frances Tiafoe, and Federer is partnering with Belinda Bencic, according to CNN (opens in new tab).
Williams described the opportunity to share the court with Federer as being "like a dream come true."
"I have been looking forward to it, this is so cool," she added.
Federer is also excited about the match.
"It's very exciting for us," he said."I admire everything she has done on and off the court. I have always thought what it was like to return that serve and go head to head with her."
One thing we know for sure is that it will be a good game—and we can only hope Serena's daughter, the ever-adorable Alexis Olympia (opens in new tab), will be in the stands cheering her mom on.
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Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
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