Serena Williams was too ill to get out of bed for most of Friday. She was too tightly wound to close out what would have been a routine straight-set victory against Lucie Safarova on Saturday.

But as Williams’s increasingly remarkable tennis career has made clear, she is never more dangerous than when cornered.

This obstacle course of a French Open provided reminders in nearly every round as Williams hit, shrieked, swore and coughed her way through all kinds of trouble, including five three-set matches and a nasty case of the flu.

Saturday’s 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-2 victory over Safarova was a fitting finale to what might have been Williams’s most challenging run to a Grand Slam singles title.

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