World No 1 Serena Williams may exhibit a perfect game on court today and is lauded for her power-packed performance time and again, but the tennis star had some serious issues with her physique while growing up.
Serena Williams strikes a pose at Crabdon Park in Key Biscayne, Florida after winning the Miami Open earlier this year. Pic/AFP
Serena (33) told Ireland's Huffington Post that she was not too happy about her appearance as a youngster and more so since her elder sister Venus (35) was quite slim.
Venus' model-like body
"It was not easy growing up. I saw that Venus had a model's body, and I was much bigger than her.
"I was not sure how to face the fact that most athletes are slim, so I came to the conclusion that I had to love myself for how I did it. I had to look for other models, but now it's different. My body now has this style and I love it," said Serena, who has an astounding 20 Grand Slam titles to her name.
Serena felt that her ability to look ahead at life eventually helped her overcome serious injuries like the one she suffered to her foot in 2010, which not many know about.
"Something dropped on my foot, I don't know what, but I pretty much cut my foot in half. I had surgery two times and it was very hard. When you return from injury, it's a bit like recovering from a heartbreak — early on it hurts, but over time, it passes," added Serena, claiming that racism is another issue she found tough to deal with. In fact, in 2001 she had to boycott the 2001 Indian Wells tournament due to racist taunts.
"It was not easy to leave behind those hours crying in the locker room in 2001. "On the way home, I felt I had lost the most important match of my life, that of equality. There are so many things that we lived as Americans, but now it's time to get up, and I do not speak only of me but for all of us."