So I’m writing this post to clear a few things up. Since the news broke that Serena Williams is going to be a mum in the very near future I’ve been asked the following question a lot: “Are you gutted?” In short, no. I am the opposite of gutted. When the news was confirmed late on Wednesday night I was ecstatic. Serena has spoken for years about her desire to have a family and we all knew that eventually the time would come when she would step away from the game to do just that.
Will I miss her on the tour over the next year or so? Of course. I think the whole of the tennis world will miss her but this is a happy time. A time to celebrate all that she has achieved on and off the court. A time to congratulate her and Alexis on their joyous news. I’ve seen some fans criticising the timing while others are calling out articles as sexist. The reality is tennis is just her job, and it’s a very physical one, meanwhile carrying a baby has its own impacts on the body. Some of the questions being asked in articles would not be written about men, it’s true, but it would also be true to say that no male pro-athletes have carried a baby.
Serena is adamant that she will return to the tour in 2018, possibly as early as the Australian Open – she is still the bookies favourite – but either way she has had a wonderful career and will continue to thrive after tennis. Let us celebrate that rather than commiserating any perceived loss.