Opinion: New version of Serena Williams provides a plot twist as she chases her greatest triumph

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Even for Serena Williams, this shouldn’t be possible. 

Not the fact that she’s back in another Grand Slam semifinal, so close yet again to No. 24. Or that she’s able to still beat some of the best players in the world at age 39, at a time when most of her contemporaries and rivals are long gone from high-level professional tennis. 

No, the most shocking thing about how Williams has ripped through the draw at this unique Australian Open is that she’s been able to seemingly turn back the clock on a body that for the last few years seemed like it was going to be the biggest obstacle to winning more Slams. 

Regardless of what happens in Wednesday night’s semifinal against Naomi Osaka, who has established herself as the best hard court player in the world, one more big run for Serena no longer seems like a long shot. 

“I’m here, and I’m happy to be here and I gotta keep going,” Williams said after beating No. 2-ranked Simona Halep 6-3, 6-3 in a quarterfinal match…

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