23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams says she plans to retire from tennis sometime after competing in the 2022 U.S. Open.
In an interview for Vogue, Williams said: “I have never liked the word retirement. It doesn’t feel like a modern word to me. Maybe the best word to describe what I’m up to is evolution. I’m here to tell you that I’m evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me.”
Williams added that if she has to choose between tennis and her family, at this point in her life she’s choosing her family: “Believe me, I never wanted to have to choose between tennis and a family. I don’t think it’s fair. If I were a guy, I wouldn’t be writing this because I’d be out there playing and winning while my wife was doing the physical labor of expanding our family. Maybe I’d be more of a Tom Brady if I had that opportunity.” Williams hinted that the 2022 U.S. Open will be her last tournament.
Williams’ 23 Grand Slam titles includes three wins at the French Open, six wins at the U.S. Open, and seven wins at both the Australian Open and Wimbledon. Her last Grand Slam win came at the 2017 Australian Open, when she was eight weeks pregnant with her daughter Olympia. Since having her daughter, Williams has competed in four Grand Slam finals (2018 Wimbledon, 2018 U.S. Open, 2019 Wimbledon, 2019 U.S. Open), but has lost all four times. She is just one Grand Slam win short of Margaret Court‘s record of 24 Grand Slam titles.
Williams said in her Vogue article: “There are people who say I’m not the GOAT because I didn’t pass Margaret Court’s record of 24 grand slam titles, which she achieved before the ‘open era’ that began in 1968. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want that record. Obviously I do. But day to day, I’m really not thinking about her.”
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