Serena Williams Says She Will Retire From Tennis: Live Updates

Serena Williams, the 23-time Grand Slam champion who has been the face of tennis since successful her first U.S. Open in 1999, stated in {a magazine} article printed on-line on Tuesday that she deliberate to retire from the game after enjoying once more within the event, which begins later this month.

Williams, who way back transcended her sport as a dominant cultural determine, stated in an as-told-to cowl story for Vogue that she has “never liked the word retirement,” and most popular the phrase “evolution” to explain her subsequent steps. “I’m evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me,” together with working together with her enterprise capital agency and rising her household.

She was not express about when she may cease enjoying, however hinted on Instagram that the U.S. Open might be her final event. “The countdown has begun,” she stated, including, “I’m gonna relish these next few weeks.”

Exiting the stage this 12 months on the U.S. Open could be a becoming finish to Williams’s storied profession. She received her first Grand Slam title there, in 1999, when she was simply 17 years outdated, or 23 years in the past, a quantity that matches her profession Grand Slam tally.

“It feels like the right exclamation point, the right ending,” stated Pam Shriver, the previous participant and tennis commentator who was one of many nice doubles champions of the Eighties. “It doesn’t matter her result, and it’s a conclusion that feels a lot better than last year at Wimbledon.”

At Wimbledon in 2021, Williams was pressured to retire from her first-round match after just some minutes when she slipped and tore her hamstring.

The damage sidelined her for almost a 12 months. In truth, Shriver and others thought it was doubtless that Williams may by no means formally retire however would as an alternative drift into the existence that she assumed for almost a 12 months following her teary Wimbledon exit.

This spring although, Williams stated she received the itch to play competitively once more. In the Vogue story, she said that Tiger Woods satisfied her to decide to coaching arduous for 2 weeks and see what transpired. She didn’t instantly take his recommendation however finally started hitting and signed up for the doubles competitors at a Wimbledon tuneup occasion.

At Wimbledon, she performed a spirited however inconsistent three-hour, first-round match however misplaced to Harmony Tan of France, 7-5, 1-6, 7-6 (7), throughout which she confirmed flashes of the ability and contact that had as soon as made her almost unbeatable.

Williams stated that she and her husband, Alexis Ohanian, deliberate to have one other youngster.

“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 final Grand Slam event victory got here whereas she was pregnant throughout the Australian Open in 2017, was eradicated from Wimbledon in June within the first spherical.

“Unfortunately I wasn’t ready to win Wimbledon this year,” Williams stated. “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 has received almost $100 million in prize cash.

For the second, Williams is second to Margaret Court of Australia in Grand Slam singles championships, a file she had a number of probabilities to tie and surpass in 2018 and 2019 when she misplaced 4 Grand Slam finals with out successful a set. However, few in tennis imagine that shortcoming ought to tarnish the legacy that Williams leaves as the best feminine tennis participant, and one of many best athletes in any sport.

Correction: 

Aug. 9, 2022

An earlier model of this text misstated Serena Williams’s age when she first received the U.S. Open in 1999. She was 17, not 18.

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