To say that Serena Williams has had an illustrious career in tennis would be an understatement. As she bids adieu to the sport that she has dominated since 2000, the international tennis world will pay homage to the 22-time Grand Slam champion and former No. 1 player in the world. With her retirement, Serena leaves behind a resounding legacy as one of the greatest athletes of all time and one of the best American athletes of all time. Here’s how her legacy will live on long after she retires from tennis.
In a Tuesday Vogue story, tennis legend Serena Williams announced her retirement.
“I’ve never been a fan of the word retiring,” Williams penned. “Evolution could be the greatest word to use to describe what I’m doing. I’m here to let you know that my priorities are shifting away from tennis and toward other things.
Williams, who turns 41 next month, has won over $94 million in career prize money along with 73 singles wins and 23 doubles trophies.
Williams is considered as one of the greatest athletes of all time. In her Vogue essay, she recognised that some of her detractors had remarked that she hadn’t racked up the most Grand Slam triumphs in women’s tennis history.
Some claim that I’m not the greatest player ever because I haven’t surpassed Margaret Court’s total of 24 grand slam victories, which she attained prior to the start of the “open era” in 1968. If I said I didn’t want that record, I’d be lying.
After the U.S. Open, which will take place in late August or early September, she declared she would retire. If she were to triumph there, it would tie Court’s Grand Slam record.
“I’m unsure if I’ll be prepared to win New York. But I’m going to try,” Williams wrote in reference to the Queens-based competition.
She has kept track of sponsorships received from brands like Nike, Audemars Piguet, Away, Beats, Bumble, Gatorade, Gucci, Lincoln, Michelob, Nintendo, Wilson Sporting Goods, and Procter & Gamble.
“I never wanted to have to decide between having a family and playing tennis. It’s not fair, in my opinion,” Williams wrote. If I were a guy, I wouldn’t be writing this since my wife would be doing the physical labour of growing our family while I was out there playing and winning.
In the announcement, Williams put a strong emphasis on her family, stating that her daughter, who is almost five years old, wants to be an older sister. Alexis Ohanian, the creator of Reddit, is married to Williams.
I have to put my responsibilities as a mother, my spiritual goals, and finding a new, fascinating Serena first. In a post on Instagram on Tuesday, Williams said, “I’m going to cherish these future weeks.”
In her professional life, she seeks to grow Serena Ventures, a six-person investment company that was one of the first to invest in MasterClass. This year, her company secured $111 million in outside funding.
Williams stated that only 2% of venture funding goes to women and that “more people who look like me need to be in that position, giving money back to themselves” in order for this statistic to change.