Venus Williams, Long in Shadow, is Not to Be Forgotten

Venus Williams, Long in Shadow, is Not to Be Forgotten

Tennis player Venus Williams, who has won a total of seven Grand Slam singles titles, lost in the first round of the French Open last month. (Courtesy of William West/AFP via Getty Images)
Tennis player Venus Williams, who has won a total of seven Grand Slam singles titles, lost in the first round of the French Open last month. (Courtesy of William West/AFP via Getty Images)

Juliet Macur, THE NEW YORK TIMES

 

 

Serena Williams has a big sister who plays tennis.

The big sister is the quieter one and the taller one, the one named Venus, who has had to answer question after question here at the United State Open about her sibling who once was very much her equal on the court and, briefly, her equal in the record books.

Venus, how is Serena feeling as she tries to complete a Grand Slam?

Venus, when did you figure out that your little sister had the talent to be the best ever?

Venus, asked one reporter after the first round, “Years ago, it was all about Venus; now it seems to be Serena.”

And then: “You seem so calm. We still think you’re fabulous. What are your thoughts about the attention your sister has been getting?”

As that last awkward inquiry unfolded, Venus — who has won two singles titles here and seven majors altogether — played with her hair, then rested her chin on her left hand.

Sigh. Going into the third round of this Open, one-third of the questions asked at Venus’s news conferences here have been about Serena, Serena, Serena.

It took a straight-sets victory in the third round, on Friday, to finally change things, at least for the moment.

 

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