‘Like a Death’ – Mother Oracene Once Narrated How Serena Williams’ Debut US Open Final Turned Out to Be a Worst Nightmare for Venus Williams
Venus and Serena Williams are two of the best tennis players of all time. The sisters have ruled the game of tennis for over two decades. Although they are very close, the rivalry between the two has always been fierce. While Venus made her debut earlier and started shining right away, people close to the sisters knew that Serena will achieve more.
Back in the 1999 US Open, the stage was set for both Serena and Venus to stamp their authority. The two sisters were going to play in Semifinals with different opponents. While Serena made it to the finals, Venus lost to Martina Hingis. This set up the final between Serena and Hingis.
Here’s what Oracene Williams told later about her daughter Venus’ state after losing an opportunity to play in the finals.
Venus wanted to be the first Williams to bring home the Grand Slam glory
Serena outclassed the top seed Martina Hingis and won her first Grand Slam title. it was a happy occasion for the Williams family, but Elder sister Venus was sad. She was disappointed because she couldn’t be the first daughter from home to bring Grand Slam glory.
“It was almost like a death, that loss for Venus,” Oracene said. “Venus didn’t sleep, and I felt her emotion all night, so I couldn’t sleep well either. She thinks since she’s the oldest, she should’ve been the first, that maybe she should’ve been tougher. That’s something they’ve thought about all their lives: Meeting in a final, two sisters. She feels she let everybody down,” Oracene said.
The champion player bounced back the next year. She claimed the Wimbledon Championship in the year 2000 and followed it up with the US Open title later.
As a player, the relations, family, and affection took the back seat whenever these two sisters were on the opposite side of the nets. While the sisters were extremely supportive of each, they were equally fierce against each other on the court.
Teenage tennis sisters from America, Venus (left) and Serena Williams take time off a practise session to pose together during the Adidas International event at White City in Sydney, Australia. Mandatory Credit: Clive Brunskill/Allsport
If we have a look at their rivalry, the two came face to face on 31 occasions. Serena enjoys a comfortable lead of 19-12 over her elder sister. If we compare their achievements, Serena leads Venus 23-7 in the number of Grand Slam victories, too.
Although Serena is a clear winner here, it doesn’t take away anything from Venus. Even though she has a more successful sister, she has achieved enough to be called a legend, and never remained in the shadows of her sister.