The tennis champion of the United States, Serena Williams, declared on Tuesday that “the countdown has begun” to her retirement from the game.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion continued by saying that it is now time for her to change her course in life.
Although she has not given a precise date for her exit, Williams said, “It’s the hardest thing I could ever imagine.”
The tennis player’s statement follows her first victory of the year, a two-set triumph at the National Bank Open.
“I’m here to tell you that I’m evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me,” the legendary athlete said in an interview with Vogue.
“It’s the hardest thing that I could ever imagine. I don’t want it to be over, but at the same time, I’m ready for what’s next,” she said.
Williams said in an exclusive interview with Vogue that she never liked the word “retirement” and would much rather use the word “evolution.”
She said, “I have never liked the word retirement. It doesn’t feel like a modern word to me. I’ve been thinking of this as a transition, but I want to be sensitive about how I use that word, which means something very specific and important to a community of people.
“A few years ago, I quietly started Serena Ventures, a venture capital firm. Soon after that, I started a family. I want to grow that family.”
Serena Williams is still set to play at next week’s Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.
She wrote, “’Unfortunately I wasn’t ready to win Wimbledon this year. 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.”
In her interview, the illustrious Williams expressed her gratitude to her fans and said she would miss both the game and the person she once was.
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