YouGov surveyed 1,732 adults in the UK in a poll which posed one, simple question: “Do you think if you were playing your very best tennis, you could win a point off Serena Williams?”
Even if all the men polled were actually experienced tennis players this would be an extraordinary feat. Given that Serena has made an estimated $90 million worth of prize money since going pro in 1995, has a serve of 119mph, holds the record for the most WTA finals wins – 72 to just 20 losses, has 23 Grand Slam Titles, won the U.S. Open 6 times and Wimbledon 7 times, and actually won the 2017 Australian Open while in the early stages of pregnancy it would probably have to be a pretty self-important person to believe they could face off against her on the tennis court and not completely embarrass themselves.
Yet, these people exist. There are actually some mediocre, average joes out there that believe they would be able to score against one of the greatest tennis players of all time. The confidence level is just astounding.
The results revealed a more delusional grasp of reality. 12% of men surveyed confidently stated “I think I could.” Additionally, 14% of men stated they “don’t know” how you would fair against Serena Williams in a tennis match as if there was any part of this someone could be unsure about.
If the position men have towards women in sports is any indication of how they believe they compare in general, we still have a lot of work to do. Although, as hard as it is to believe the responses in this survey, it’s absolutely impossible to fathom that any person could answer in a similar manner to a question posed about some talents outside of sports, where on average men have an advantage over women. “On average” is the keyword there.
It would be interesting to survey those same men if they believe they could do Margaret Hamilton’s job—lead software engineer for the Apollo Program at NASA—job if they absolutely had to. I mean, sure, it’s possible Serena could by some miracle make a mistake or by some fluke trip on an untied shoelace. But it would be deeply shocking to find out that there are men out there that believe they could write code, by hand, and take humanity to the moon—simply because a woman was able to do it.
For the sake of amusement, Serena Williams took on not one but five men, and the results went as exactly as a rational human being would have expected.
Three men tried to return her serve and failed. Quite Miserably. One guy even got hit in the leg with the ball and screamed in agony, after not being able to get his racquet up fast enough. The fifth guy finally managed to return her serve and she only had to smash it back at him. It was pathetic.
Here’s the video for a good laugh and a lesson in challenging a Tennis legend:
Please watch it again. And again. And again.
Hopefully, this puts the matter to rest—it doesn’t matter whether you’re a man or a woman…Serena would probably kick your ass in tennis with one of her arms tied behind her back.