No one is fresher than our Queen Serena Williams on or off the tennis court. On Monday, Qai Qai's grandmother played her first match of the Australian Open against Tatjana Maria in a bright teal lycra romper with black fishnets underneath. As with everything the athlete wears, we know it isn't just about fashion but function.
Take for instance the black catsuit Williams played in during the 2018 French Open — which was later prohibited by the French Tennis Federation and inspired a revision to the Women's Tennis Association 2019 dress code. "I've always wanted to be a superhero, and it's kind of my way of being a superhero. I've had a lot of problems with my blood clots, God I don't know how many I've had in the past 12 months,” she said. "I've been wearing pants in general a lot when I play so I can keep the blood circulation going." Or the Off-White tutu Virgil Abloh designed for the Olympian that seemed to be an exaggeration of femininity on the court pushing back against the idea that she doesn't fit the sport's "traditional standards."
Monday's ensemble was no different. Williams didn't let the French Tennis Federation's response deter her. "I've since found other methods [for encouraging blood circulation], and when it comes to fashion you don't want to be a repeat offender,” she told reporters during a press conference for the U.S. Open last August. Her most recent choice was a good example of those other methods, including what Williams has dubbed the "Serena-tard."
According to Yahoo!, after winning her first match back in Australia since giving birth to her daughter Alexis, Serena told reporters Nike created an outfit to show how hard she worked at her fitness goals post-baby. "You know, I took a year off, and, you know, just get back with still trying to get 12 months under my belt of playing, actually," she explained.
"We design really far in advance at Nike. I knew that I have been working really, really hard in the offseason to be incredibly fit and incredibly ready." She continued: "I wanted to be fit. I came back. Nike always wants to make an incredibly strong, powerful statement for moms that are trying to get back and get fit. That was basically it for me."