Serena Williams ‘not retired’ despite lavish sendoff
Women’s tennis great Serena Williams could return to competitive action one day after denying that she is retired.
The 41-year-old appeared to have played her last competitive match at the US Open in September.
But making her first public appearance since losing to Ajla Tomljanovic in the third round in New York, the 23-time Grand Slam singles champion stated: “I am not retired.”
“The chances [of me returning] are very high. You can come to my house and [see] I have a court,” added Williams, speaking at the TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco on Wednesday.
Williams was at the event to promote her Serena Ventures investment company which has raised $111 million in funding this year.
“I started this company a while ago, so I just jumped right into that. I didn’t even think about the whole retirement,” Williams claimed.
“I still haven’t really thought about it. But I did go on the court the other day and [realized] for the first time in my life that I’m not playing for a competition and that felt very weird.
“It was like the first day of the rest of my life, and so far, I am enjoying it. But I’m still trying to find that balance,” she added.
Asked how she keeps her fiery on-court alter ego from creeping into her business dealings, Williams insisted that she is now more relaxed as she gets on in years.
“The tennis [Serena] is very intense, but as I got older, the meaning of my name has enveloped me,” Williams said. “I am very calm and chill.
“I waited 17 years to win my first Grand Slam. So I can wait [for business to take off],” she added jokingly.
Married to Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian since 2017, Williams revealed that the couple rarely discusses business at home due to them being too competitive.
“I’m internally so competitive,” she said. “You can’t read my face if inside I’m screaming and dying. We don’t want that so we keep it very separate.”
Williams’ August retirement announcement sent shockwaves through the sport and came a month ahead of men’s tennis legend Roger Federer also calling it a day in September.
After making his final appearance at the Laver Cup alongside generational rival Rafael Nadal in London, however, the Swiss has no plans to return to the court in a competitive fashion due to persistent knee injuries.