“I always think about the fact that there are only two of us in the top 200. A big part of it is because we don’t believe we can do it,” Sherif said. “We didn’t have anyone before us who has done it that would give us the belief that we could too.
“We don’t know the way, how to do it. I used to look at Ons and think, ‘Ons made it to the top 200, why can’t I?’ Ons made it to the top 100 and stayed in the top 200 for a long time, why can’t I do that?
“I saw how Ons took it step by step – maybe if we had better resources, or if we had someone to show us how to do it, maybe we would have made it sooner, but that doesn’t mean we will not make it, we have the chance.
“For the moment there’s only two of us, I hope the future generations can see us and think, ‘well, they have done it, why can’t we?’”
Sherif, competing in just her second Grand Slam, had an anxious start against Osorio Serrano on Wednesday as they exchanged seven breaks of serve before the Egyptian took the first set in 49 minutes. She steadied her nerves and served up a bagel in the second to book a qualifying second-round meeting with American teenager Caty McNally.