Trending Topics

A ‘Grateful’ Serena Williams Closes Out 2015 Season Early, Blames Fatigue

Tennis megastar Serena Williams is irrefutably one of the greatest athletes in history. After taking home three out of four Grand Slam titles this year, she was set to go on and participate in the Chinese Open at WTA and compete in another match in Singapore.

Coupled with a devastating loss to Roberta Vinci at the U.S. Open last month and physical fatigue, Williams decided to step away from the sport she loves most to regain her energy and practice for the 2016 tennis season. Williams explained her decision in a recent statement.

“It’s no secret I’ve played injured most of the year — whether it was my elbow, my knee, or, in the finals moments after a certain match in Flushing, my heart,” Williams said.

She continued, “I’m a fierce competitor. And I want to compete as well as I can, for as long as I can. So I am taking a proactive step and withdrawing from tournaments in Beijing and Singapore to properly address my health and take the time to heal.

This is a very difficult decision, but one ultimately made because of the love of the game. I plan to return to practicing and participating in exhibition matches later this year. And when I do, l will focus and focus and focus so I can continue my journey in this beautiful game.”

Reactions to Williams’ withdrawal are mixed by both sports critics and fans. Some support her decision to downshift her gears, while others are concerned about her capabilities to continue as the world’s no. 1 player as she increases in age. A few also considered the damage to her image by bowing out. Some fans who follow tennis closely felt injury wasn’t enough to keep her off the court.

Williams further explained her decision in her statement.

“Arthur Ashe once said, ‘Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome. My journey in tennis this year has been at times exhilarating, at times disappointing, but in every case, in victory and defeat, it has been extremely rewarding.

“I’ve grown more this year than perhaps at any other point in my career. The tennis family, and our fans, have embraced and supported me in ways I never imagined. I am grateful beyond words.

“I love this game more than ever. I hold deep respect for all those who have graced our courts. I’ve been privileged to be one of the few to understand their struggles and their triumphs.”

Williams won three Grand Slam titles and went 53-3 in 2015, while also winning two other competitions, making her only two matches short of history.

And with the Olympics around the corner, one can safely assume is Williams is not going to let a gold medal slip out of her fingers. To be an athlete comes with a lot of endurance and barrier crashing, so to be a world-renowned, record-shattering athlete probably holds a certain degree of self-expectation some of us cannot fully comprehend.

As her coach Patrick Mouratoglou said to espnW, “I have no doubt the motivation will be there [going forward] and no doubt she’ll be the same Serena. She just won four Grand Slams in a row and got to the semifinals of a fifth. It’s [also] not time to doubt whether age will affect her. She has a lot of time left.”

Back to top