“Serena did her part”

“Serena did her part”

The tennis world was rocked by the announcement of Serena Williams’ imminent retirement.

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“I was a little surprised by his decision,” said Eugène Lapierre. I thought she was trying to get back to her level of play from back then.

“But hey, she had a child to commemorate the National Bank Open boss. She has done her part.

“Serena was the greatest tennis player in history with 23 Grand Slam titles, claims Lapierre. And I don’t think that record will be broken. »

A great ambassador

“It doesn’t count on his personality. She has raised the profile of women’s tennis to a very high level. In addition, she is a woman of color who has championed diversity in the sport and for people of all races.

“All in all, she was a great ambassador for international tennis. »

Although Serena has never won in Montreal (beat by Switzerland’s Martina Hingis in the 2000 final), she has lifted the trophy in Toronto three times (2001, 2011 and 2013).

Her last visit to Montreal dates back to 2014, where she was defeated by her sister Venus in the semifinals.

In French

Lapierre recalled an anecdote about the youngest of the Williams sisters.

“At my first tournament as a manager in Montreal in 2002, her father came to tell me two hours before their game started that Serena couldn’t play because of a knee injury.

“I then asked her father if Serena could address the crowd to explain her crime. Everyone had paid to see them play at the stadium. »

Please the public

Eventually she accepted, much to the delight of the tournament director.

“I’ll take her through the tunnel that leads to the field,” says Lapierre, and I remembered that she could speak French.

“But she didn’t want to. I insisted and told him, “If you know a few words, it would be a good time to start speaking French”.

However, she arrives in front of the microphone in the middle of the field and addresses the crowd as follows: “Bonsoir Montréal”.

“Then she continued speaking in French to explain that she was hurt. Even though the spectators couldn’t see her play, they continued to applaud her,” concluded Lapierre.