The Queen of Comebacks



Serena Williams, of the United States, waves to the crowd after defeating Danka Kovinic, of Montenegro, during the first round of the US Open tennis championships, Monday, Aug. 29, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

The game of tennis is one that many enjoy to watch and find pleasure in leisurely playing. However for Serena Williams, tennis is much more than a simple game; it’s a lifestyle. Serena Williams was born in Saginaw, Michigan on September 26, 1991 but later raised in Compton, California. At age four, her father introduced her to tennis; playing on public courts while learning the basics. From the very start, her father instilled in her and her sister, Venus, to remain humble and to never forget where they came from. Growing up, the Williams family was not the most prosperous and economically stable, but because he saw such natural talent in the girls, he made it a priority to remind them to always approach a situation with kindness and humility. At age 14, Serena Williams had reached a professional level and began her rise to fame. Although Serena had won many games and proved herself to be a worthy competitor, she still received backlash and hate for the color of her skin and her poverty-stricken background. Serena refused to let the negative comments destroy her mindset and instead used them to fuel her forward. Sawyer Simmons (10) an athlete at Lenoir City High School, expressed how Serena has encouraged her. 

“She has taught me to think in a resilient mindset. That in order for your growing dreams to prosper, you have to be willing to grow too,” Simmons said. 

Serena Williams has most definitely revolutionized women’s tennis with her powerful style and fight to win. With 858 tour victories, 73 singles titles, an Olympic gold medal, and 319 weeks at number one, Serena’s dedication to her sport has inspired so many around the world. Serena’s commitment to excellence has also made a great impact on our own Sawyer Simmons’ which is evident in her commitment to cross country, track, and basketball.

Not only has Serena Williams dominated in her technique and skill in regards to tennis, but she also never fails to dominate with her fashion. Serena has partnered with brands such as Nike and Puma to create her unforgettable looks, bringing style and competition to the court. When asked about Serena’s tennis attire, Sawyer Simmons explained that her personal favorite was Serena’s most recent black and diamond encrusted dress. Serena showed up to the court sporting bedazzle head to toe ready to take on the upcoming game. 

In August of 2022, Serena Williams announced her retirement from tennis after she would compete in the U.S. Open. To some this was upsetting, but to others it seemed like a break well deserved.  Eli Park (11) displayed his views on the matter.

“Her retirement didn’t really shock me because she’s earned her time of rest,” Park said. 

After playing for over 27 years, setting records, and influencing the game of tennis in such a positive and beneficial way, Serena Williams has indeed earned her time of rest. Serena devoted her life to tennis and committed to doing her best when it came to the sport. Her “never quit” mindset has inspired so many, and although she has taken a step back from tennis, her legacy will live on. Serena Williams shared about the difficult process while deciding the next chapter of her life.

“I know it’s not the usual thing to say, but I feel a great deal of pain. It’s the hardest thing that I could ever imagine. I hate it. I hate that I have to be at this crossroads. I keep saying to myself, I wish it could be easy for me, but it’s not. I’m torn: I don’t want it to be over, but at the same time I’m ready for what’s next,” Williams elaborated in her 2022 Vogue cover ,”Serena Williams says farewell to tennis on her own terms-and in her own words.”

Serena Williams’ life revolved around tennis, attending endless practices, participating in matches, and working on her technique day after day. If it were not for her father’s wise words and belief in Serena, she would not be where she is today. Serena has overcome so much in her lifetime, and although it will be sad to continue to watch tennis without the legend that is Serena Williams, it will be heartening to see how her influence and legacy will remain on the court.