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The Williams Sisters: Tennis Greats With A Stormy Relationship

They may be the two greatest athletes in the history of women’s sport. Venus and Serena Williams have dominated tennis for more than a decade. They have a fierce rivalry on the court and their personal lives haven’t always been rosy either. But through it all, they have persevered and succeeded. Here’s what you need to know about the sports world’s most famous sisters.

Serena Has The On-Court Advantage

Sports Illustrated

The sisters have met on the court 25 times across the course of their careers, and at the moment, Serena is leading with 14 wins to 11.

Serena’s The Angry Sister

Japan Times

Serena is a bit of a female John McEnroe, and she was once fined $82,500 for losing the plot in a foul-mouthed tirade at a lineswoman in the US Open.

They Changed The Shape Of A Tournament Draw


If the Williams sisters are in a Grand Slam, there’s a nearly 50% chance that one of them will win it. That must be painful knowledge for opponents.

They May Both Be Sore Losers


There have been many stories that the sisters are not very gracious in defeat and they are generally seen as “cold fish” by their peers.

2002 Was The Willams Sisters’ Year


Venus began 2002 as Number 1, then Serena won Wimbledon and she became Number 1. Thus, 2002 is the only year in which both sisters have held the world Number 1 slot.

They’ve Both Been Beaten On Grass, Twice

LA Times

Grass is a great environment for both of these tennis greats, and they’ve only been defeated on grass twice each. And yes, you’ve guessed it, those losses were to one another.

Serena Won Six Grand Slams In A Row

Denver Post

It started with the French Open in 2002 and ran all the way to 2003’s Wimbledon. This is the longest winning streak of either sister.

Their Father Has Earned Unwanted Attention


Richard Williams was their teacher, but his teaching methods have been considered nigh-abusive by some critics. One of his training sessions was interrupted by gang members, who thought he was being too harsh on his daughters. Seriously.

Match Fixing Accusations Came To Nothing


There has been a suspicion that the Williams sisters will throw matches in favor of each other. This has never been proven and while allegations abound, the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) has found their hands to be clean.

They Are Friends Despite Their Rivalry

WTA Tennis

It is fair to say that neither controversy nor tennis has come between the Williams sisters. They are firm friends off the court and the game appears to have brought them closer together rather than driven them apart.

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