Williams, who was ranked the world’s No. 1 by the Women’s Tennis Association for 319 weeks, announced her plans to “evolve from tennis” on August 9.
Michelle Obama Cheers For Her Good Friend, Serena Williams, Amid Retirement News
Obama has often cheered for anybody she admires and cares about. So, her 50.6 million followers were not shocked when she dedicated a touching tribute to Williams on Instagram. Along with a photo dump of the pair together from over the years, including some of Obama cheering Williams on during a tennis tournament, she partly wrote:
“Serena, thank you for everything that you’ve done to break barriers and to be a positive light in this world.”
Reflecting on the tennis queen’s journey of wearing the “crown of greatness with the kind of humility, grace, and integrity,” the mother-of-two added, “It has meant so much to follow your journey as an athlete, as a mother, as a business leader, and more. I wish you the best as you evolve into this next chapter. And please know that I’ll always be cheering you on!”
Fans liked and commented on the post, applauding the 58-year-old for her uplifting message. One wrote, “My admiration for women cheering & supporting each other on shows strength & humility,” and another chimed, “Love this so much. We will always be cheering Serena on. Go girl.” A third gushed, “Once again, our First Lady has said it perfectly. I love you.” Fans have remained supportive of Williams despite their shock after she broke the news of her retirement.
The 23-Time Grand Slam Winner Announces Retirement
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Fans’ understanding spirit might have something to do with the reasons the 40-year-old gave for the decision. The Blast shared that the mother-of-one divulged that an incident with her daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., set her on the path to retirement.
Williams recalled that Olympia mentioned wanting to be a “big sister” when an educational app asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up. The athlete added that the four-year-old often voiced her wish whenever she was out of earshot and even prayed to “Jehovah” for a baby sister. And while Williams has never been big on having to choose between tennis and family, she did not have the luxury that men did to have it all.
However, she noted that despite the challenges, she had no regrets about being a woman and loved being pregnant with Olympia. Unfortunately, Williams will soon clock 41, meaning that time was no longer on her side. Thus she had to “move on from playing tennis” despite her reluctance.
The Michigan Native Hinted At Preparedness For Retirement Earlier This Year
Back in February, The Blast reported that Williams had hinted at retirement when she told Kevin Frazier, “I am prepared for that day. I’ve been prepared for that day for over a decade… If you’ve seen ‘King Richard,’ you know that my dad always said you got to prepare, so I’ve been prepared for that.”
She clarified that having a plan for the future was vital, and she has always had one from the get-go. The plans the “Venus and Serena” star referred to might be any of her 70 business involvements, including the clothing line S by Serena. The 23-time Grand Slam titleholder added that even though she sometimes struggled to manage her busy schedule as a wife and mother, she had an “outstanding team” that helped balance her workload.
Williams further opened up about her desire to have more kids in the future, despite her struggles with finding the perfect time to conceive. In her words, “I definitely want to have more kids… And I know the clock is ticking, so I’m just like, OK, I need to figure out when that’s going to be, but hopefully soon when I will feel no pressure.”
Asides from making more babies, Williams would have a lot to keep her busy when she quits tennis following a 2021 first-look TV arrangement with Amazon studios that will cover her docuseries. Additionally, the youngest Williams child and the star of Quentin Tarantino’s “Reservoir Dogs,” Steve Buscemi, worked together on a Super Bowl ad for Michelob Ultra that aired on NBC on February 13.