My treasured moment at the 2015 Australian Open came in the third round; for the first time since 2011, both Williams sisters were still alive in the round of 16 in the same Grand Slam. Nothing could be better for this fan. Of course younger sister’s win at the Aussie Open, claiming her 19th Grand Slam and the victory speech about struggle-to-triumph that Serena gave, holds a significantly special place of it’s own.
Special as well is the Resurgence of Venus
After reaching the quarters in Australia, seeing her ranking rise to #11 is a phenomenal achievement!
Most notably so, as most tennis commentators and others in the tennis media had written Venus off after her announcement at the 2011 US Open that she was diagnosed with the debilitating, fatigue inducing disorder.
Sport is just like life; it’s filled with up and downs. There are times when you just can’t lose and other times when the luck always seems to go the other way. Life can be especially tough when we are dealing with challenges that are out of our control. Here’s where my story comes in.
For the best part of 2013, I had been struggling with a back injury. I’ve dealt with a lot of injuries—countless, actually. But this one was quite devastating as it took away my biggest weapon, and the life of my game, my serve. Coming back from this injury has been one of the biggest challenges of my career. I was shocked to see how much it affected my confidence.
What I quickly found was that recovering confidence can be tricky. I have made a set of rules that helped me along the way. It came through trial and error and a handful of somewhat tragic losses. Thankfully, my losses weren’t in vain: they paved the way to self-reflection and some mind-blowing insights. As they say, “The only tragedy in losing or failing is not learning from it.”
To read Venus Williams’ 11 Steps to Regain Your Confidence – CLICK HERE→http://www.mythrivemag.com/eleven-ways-i-gain-my-confidence-back-by-venus-williams/
Evidence That She’s Back in Her Winning Stride Again
It’s still very early, but the 34-year old American has been most impressive, winning five of her past six matches against top-10 players. Venus has lost only one match this year (9-1), won her first title in Auckland and played in the quarterfinals of a major for the first time since the 2010 US Open (when she reached the semis).
Nothing short of awesome that Venus is still playing, returning to her old form and thriving while past opponents have long been enjoying retirement. What better illustration than this – Venus’ opponent in the Australian Open quarterfinal is the protegé of her old rival Lindsay Davenport. That quarterfinal Australian Open match is the only loss for Venus this year; to Madison Keys, who wasn’t even born when Venus played her first WTA tournament.
Davenport 38 , who retired from singles, developed a career as TV commentator and play-by-play analyst, is a married mother of four turned coach. Lindsay is proving her mettle as 19-year-old American Madison Keys reached a semifinal round in a grand slam for the first time in her career.
Wise move by the young Keys to secure such an accomplished coach: former world No. 1 and 3-time Grand Slam tournament champion Lindsay (a favorite player of mine) was in the finals of seven grand slams; two of them the Australian Open which she won in 2000. And overlooked is the fact that Lindsay remarkably came back into tour-level competition twice after giving birth.
Rivalry between Venus Williams and Lindsay Davenport
They played 27 competitive matches – more often than Venus has played any other opponent. Venus Williams played Lindsay Davenport for the first time in 1997 at Indian Wells. Twice they met in the final at Wimbledon, which Williams won each time. Many consider the 2005 Wimbledon as one of the, if not the best, women’s final ever. An epic match between two talented women, with similar games, playing it the way I love to watch – “Big Babe Tennis.”
WATCH: 2005 Wimbledon Final
Venus Williams Vs. Lindsay Davenport 2005
Venus has evolved into an elder statesman of the game, who successfully took on Wimbledon off-the-court, leading & winning the battle for equal reward money for women in tennis. [See Blog post: Venus Williams’ Other Career as Equal Pay Activist : Revisiting ESPN Film’s Documentary ‘Venus Vs.’ ] She is following in the footsteps of her mentor Billie Jean King, a legend whom Venus often quotes. Below is an exchange of tweets between the two during the Australian Open:
@BillieJeanKing thanks BJK! You have inspired me too, pressure is a privilige 🙂10:54 AM – 24 Jan 2015
Venus Builds Career Outside Tennis
One of the greatest tennis players of all time: winner of seven Grand Slam singles titles and Olympic gold, this woman who changed the face of modern tennis is also an accomplished business woman.
Venus’ interior design firm V Starr Interiors continues to grow. For more than a decade, she has quietly run an interior design firm in her adopted home of Florida. Two years ago V Starr decorated a $6.5 million luxury model condo for a Boca Raton development. Her latest project: developer Jorge Perez’s new apartment community in Delray Beach.
…still with her epic rise back to just outside the top 10, it’s more than obvious that her passion for Tennis has not diminished.
How fortunate for us that Venus sat with Robin Roberts and reveals a mental approach for bouncing back that has served her well throughout her career, and … shares who her dream match would be against.
submitted by guestBlogger @BlackPearlMoi (twitter account)