Serena Williams was recently interviewed by Insider magazine. (Credit: Insider magazine)
Williams last lifted a Grand Slam trophy at the 2017 Australian Open when she was eight weeks pregnant. The American, who returned from maternity leave the following year, has reached four Grand Slam finals since, but fell short on each occasion.
Williams’ quest for an elusive 24th Grand Slam title continued despite observers casting doubt over the possibility of her reaching the feat.
For Williams, however, being told that she should not be doing something only feeds the fire. During her interview, the American said there was a part of her that enjoyed proving naysayers wrong. She went on to credit this personality trait to watching her sister Venus Williams accomplish so much and her own willingness to follow in her footsteps.
“Whether it’s venture people saying that I shouldn’t be doing it, or it’s tennis when people said I’ll never be good at it,” Williams said. “I do think there’s a part of me that always will enjoy proving people wrong.”“And sometimes you just need something to feed the fire, right?” she continued. “I’m like, ‘Oh that’s what I needed to hear. You’re going to regret what you just said.’ But that’s me, and growing up behind Venus, I had to have that personality.”Williams at the 2020 Women’s ASB Classic
Shifting her focus to her venture firm, Williams said she wanted to support diverse businesses — run by women and people of color — and make sure that the space becomes more inclusive than its current state.
“The only way that people can get funding is if people like me, women and people of color, are actually writing the checks,” Williams said. “Otherwise it’s going to be the same boys’ club, except not for a lot of Black people.”
Serena Williams has slipped to World No. 243 in the WTA rankings
Williams dropped out of the top 200 in January.
Serena Williams last played a competitive match at the 2021 Wimbledon Championships, where she was forced to retire from her opening-round encounter against Aliaksandra Sasnovich after suffering a foot injury.
The American’s continued absence from the WTA tour has taken a toll on her ranking. She fell out of the top 200 after dropping the points earned during her semi-final run at the 2021 Australian Open
The 23-time Grand Slam champion climbed three spots in the latest WTA rankings and is now ranked at No. 243. Serena Williams’ return to the WTA tour remains unknown.