Best Known As:
Sister of Serena Williams and five-time winner of Wimbledon
Venus Williams dominated women"s tennis in 2000, winning singles titles at Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and the Sydney Olympics, and winning doubles titles at Wimbledon and Sydney with her younger sister Serena. (Her victory at Wimbledon made her the first black female champion there since Althea Gibson in 1957 and 1958.) Venus Williams was already a famous figure in tennis for her size (6"1"), overpowering strength, and unusual tennis background: she and Serena learned to play on public courts in tough Compton, California, coached by their self-taught father Richard. After her breakthrough 2000 campaign she was named Sportswoman of the Year by Sports Illustrated magazine. Venus Willams has won seven major titles in all: The U.S. Open in 2000 and 2001, and Wimbledon in 2000, 2001, 2005, 2007 and 2008. (She has never won the Australian Open or the French Open.) After a long period out of the limelight due to illness, she made the finals of the Australian Open in 2017. She lost there to her sister, Serena, 6-4 6-4 -- but in the process, Venus became at age 36 the oldest Grand Slam singles finalist in the Open Era.
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