Another one for the record books!
Serena Williams is used to earning championship titles in tennis, but the sports phenom’s latest feat is her first solo Vogue magazine cover. The fashion bible tapped the 19-time Grand Slam winner to front the April 2015 sports-dedicated issue, which was photographed by Annie Leibovitz.
Wearing a form-fitting Rag & Bone teal sheath dress that highlighted her athletic physique, and a dark curl-envy-sparking mane, Williams, 33, opened up about her friendships with other tennis stars and her decision to return to compete at Indian Wells for the first time in 14 years. Another shot features the tennis pro in an alluring red gown, with long, straight, and wind-blown tresses.
“Let’s just put an end to this myth that women players cannot be friends,” Williams, whose powerhouse sister Venus is also a fierce tennis player, told the mag. “We can!”
After golfer Rory McIlroy suddenly broke off his engagement to Williams’ longtime competitor Caroline Wozniacki, Williams said she was a shoulder to cry on.
“My phone was going crazy,” Wozniacki, who also appears in the issue, recalled. “But I didn’t want to talk to anyone.” A supportive Williams refused to let Wozniacki sink into a depression. “I kept calling,” Williams said.
Luckily, her persistence paid off. “First she texted, ‘If you don’t pick up, I am going to fly to Monaco.’ And then, ‘If you don’t answer the door, I am going to knock it down,'” Wozniacki remembered. “So I thought, ok, I better answer the phone. And I am so glad I did.”
Though she may be fierce on the court (and known for taking her frustration out on a racket), these days, the L.A. native is all about embracing forgiveness. After reading Nelson Mandela’s autobiography, A Long Walk to Freedom, Williams decided to return to Indian Wells, a competition she swore off completely after being viciously booed by the crowd at the age of 19. “That’s when I realized I had to go back,” Williams said. “I always talk about forgiveness, but I needed to actually show it.”