Serena Williams reveals her struggle with sexism, racism in tennis

Serena Williams, the 23-times Grand Slam singles, talked about how people are not comfortable with women champions earning the same amount of money as their male counterparts.

tennis Updated: Sep 08, 2017 14:06 IST
Serena Williams,Serena Williams Tennis,Tennis
Serena Williams recently gave birth to a baby girl with the Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.(AFP)

Serena Williams has been at the centre of attraction over the last decade and when she took time off tennis for the birth of her first child, her absence was felt strongly at the major tournaments like the Wimbledon and the US Open 2017. She was one of the biggest names in world tennis, but it was never an easy ride for her as she faced comments over her body, the colour of her skin and also her gender.

However, that could not stop the 23-times Grand Slam singles title winner, who recently gave birth to a baby girl with the Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.

Through all these hardships, Serena has remained as strong as she could be. In an interview with the Time, where she was chosen as one of the 46 ‘groundbreaking women’, Serena revealed there is not anything which she lets break her spirit.

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“I think any experience can make you stronger. I don’t let anything break me,” she said.

“It isn’t always easy to be on the stage playing a tournament and have someone making a comment about your body, that it’s too strong,” she added.

“I think the biggest criticism that, not only me, but my peers go through is there will be something saying we don’t deserve as much prize money as our male counterparts. When you work so hard, you dedicate yourself. It shouldn’t be a double standard,” Serena continued.

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Serena recalled winning her first Grand Slam at the age of 17, and how big a moment it was in her life.

“… significant first was winning my first Grand Slam. I was so young… I was 17, and I was just overwhelmed with joy. I remember grabbing my chest ‘oh my gosh’… it was something that I knew for as long as I could remember that this was something that I was going to do.”

She also remembered the times growing up, and the fact that she did not have a role model.

“Growing up I would have love to have an amazing role model. I cannot imagine what it would have been like if I did. So I felt like it is a great opportunity that some of these young ladies can have a positive role model,” she said.

First Published: Sep 08, 2017 13:39 IST