Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Serena Williams makes rare tennis appearance to support sister Venus at Miami Open

The tennis star welcomed her second child Adira in August 2023

Serena and Venus Williams
Sharnaz Shahid
Deputy Online Editor
20 March 2024
Share this:

Serena Williams was every inch the supportive sister as she cheered on Venus Williams during the opening round at the Miami Open on Tuesday. 

The 23-time Grand Slam winner was accompanied by her eldest daughter Olympia as they sat courtside, watching Venus take on Diana Shnaider. Although Venus, 43, went on to lose the match, she would have no doubt appreciated her family's support. 

Serena Williams watching sister Venus Williams play tennis© Getty
Serena Williams seen watching her sister Venus play tennis during the Miami Open

The Miami Open is a special place for the Williams sisters – it was the first tournament where both Serena and Venus faced each other in 11 of their finals together. Venus won that time in 1999, winning three titles in a span of four years, 1998-2001. 

Back in 2016, Serena opened up about why the Miami Open was so important to her. "The tournament's attendance through the years has continued to increase, and I've been fortunate to have the fans' loyal support," she told The New York Times

"I hear 'Come on, Serena!' cheers in many languages when I play in Miami. I love the diversity and the passion of the crowds. The mix of cultures and the incredible energy make it so fun to play. 

Serena Williams sitting down© Getty
This marked Serena's first tennis appearance since giving birth to her second child

"The Miami Open has played an important role in my life and the lives of so many others. The event has always supported up-and-coming players, giving wild cards over the years to Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, Steffi Graf, Monica Seles and James Blake before anyone had heard of them.

"In 1997, the tournament offered a wild card to Venus when she was just 16 years old. Miami also helped lead the way for gender equality in the tennis world. 

"Before 1985, the only combined men's and women's events were the four Grand Slams. In its inaugural year, the Miami Open broke that convention and featured both men and women."

MORE: Inside Serena Williams' palatial multi-million-dollar Florida mansion - best photos

The sighting this week marked 42-year-old Serena's first tennis appearance since welcoming her second child, Adira, in August 2023. The former athlete shares both her daughters with her husband of seven years Alexis Ohanian

Venus Williams© Getty
Venus Williams plays in the first match during the Miami Open

In August 2022, Serena announced her retirement after an incredible career spanning three decades. The star revealed that she had been considering moving away from tennis for several years, and that becoming a mother contributed to her decision. 

Speaking to Bradley Cooper alongside her sister Venus for the A+E Networks and the History Channel's History Talks, the mum-of-two detailed her thought process when deciding to retire. 

Venus Williams and Serena Williams shake hands© Getty
Venus and sister Serena competed in the women's final match in 1999

"I just needed to stop," she admitted, adding: "I always said I wanted to stop when I'm playing really good tennis and winning and beating good players… For me, it's really about things I want to do spiritually and spending time with my daughter and family." 

She also confessed: "As a super hands-on mom, I can't tell you how hard it was. I lost so many matches after I had Olympia because it was so hard to be on the court. I feel like I've given so much of my life to tennis, my entire life, that it's time to do something different for me and also work on other things."

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.

More Celebrity News

See more