Serena Williams puts retirement on hold with US Open win



Former president Bill Clinton was also in the stands, sitting next to talk show host and sex therapist Dr Ruth Westheimer.

“They’re really involved in some sort of… She’s giving him advice,” co-analyst Chris Evert said. “She just gave him advice. Yep, ‘you shouldn’t be doing that.’”

Other celebrities in attendance included Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, filmmaker Spike Lee and Queen Latifah, Hugh Jackman, actress Rebel Wilson, boxer Mike Tyson, Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn and designer Vera Wang.

After seeming to deal with nerves early on and struggling with her serve, Williams eventually took control of the opening set and took it 6-3.

Williams then broke her opponent in the fifth game of the second set to take full charge and went on to close the 1hr 40min match out with a 6-3 second set.

She will play again on Wednesday against second seed Anett Kontveit of Estonia, and also plans to play in the doubles competition with sister Venus.

Following the match, Billie Jean King took to the court to pay tribute to Williams and thanked her for what she has meant to woman, particularly women of colour.

After a video narrated by Oprah Winfrey, Serena was interviewed on the court by journalist Gayle King.

“I feel so comfortable on this court and everyone here, I just want to do my best and that is all I can do. The crowd was crazy, they really helped pull me through,” Williams said.

She said it had been “a very hard decision” to retire and that she loved to still play “as it keeps you fit, that’s a bonus.”

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“I have a family and there are other chapters in life, I call it an evolution.”

And she added: “I want people to be inspired by my story, I am from Compton, California. We made it.”

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