Serena Williams "Evolving" Away from Tennis. Plans to Retire from the Sport to Expand Her Family.
There comes a time in every great athlete's life where they have to make the hard decision to hang up their gear and contemplate their next phase in life. Serena Williams, arguably one of the greatest tennis players to ever live, has found herself at that crossroad and, it's for a very good reason.
Williams and her husband, Alexis Ohanian, have decided to expand their family. In order to do so, Williams feels she needs to bow out gracefully from tennis.
Williams told Vogue magazine that "A lot of people don’t realize that I was two months pregnant when I won the Australian Open in 2017. But I’m turning 41 this month, and something’s got to give."
The New York Times reports that Williams was not explicit about when she might stop playing, but hinted on Instagram that the U.S. Open could be her last tournament. “The countdown has begun,” she said, adding, “I’m gonna relish these next few weeks.”
“In the last year, Alexis and I have been trying to have another child, and we recently got some information from my doctor that put my mind at ease and made me feel that whenever we’re ready, we can add to our family. I definitely don’t want to be pregnant again as an athlete. I need to be two feet into tennis or two feet out.”
Williams, whose last Grand Slam tournament victory came while she was pregnant during the Australian Open in 2017, was eliminated from Wimbledon in June in the first round.
“Unfortunately I wasn’t ready to win Wimbledon this year,” Williams said. “And I don’t know if I will be ready to win New York. But I’m going to try. And the lead-up tournaments will be fun.”
Williams said that her daughter, Alexis Olympia who is almost five, has dreams of being a big sister and she wants to make that dream come true. "I’m the youngest of five sisters myself, and my sisters are my heroes, so this has felt like a moment I need to listen very carefully to."
We applaud Serena Williams for listening to her heart and bowing out gracefully on her own terms. So many athletes stay in the game too long and end up with health problems or worse. This is a win for Williams and her family.
We can't wait to report on the little one that is to come!