Venus Williams is without her little sister at the French Open this year, as Serena Williams prepares for the birth of her first child…but the press made sure her presence was felt, nonetheless.
After Venus’ first round win over China’s Qiang Wang on Sunday in straight sets (scroll down to watch highlights), the No. 10 seed was peppered with questions about her sister’s pregnancy. While it won’t be her first time becoming an auntie, it will be her first as a full-fledged, hands-on adult auntie.
“Well, I don’t like to talk too much, so my mouth will always be shut,” Williams said, smiling. “But I’m definitely looking forward to it. I have no idea what the experience will be like because previously I became an aunt when I was very young and lived far away, across the country (in Florida), so it was a completely different experience than it will be this time.
“So I hope that I can live up to this job. I’ve got to get some confidence that I can do this. It’s all new for me. It’s a great journey.”
Auntie Venus said her biggest concern is being unaware of her exact role.
“I don’t know yet, that’s the problem,” she said, laughing. “I don’t know how well I’m going to do, because I don’t know what to do. I think you just have to be ready, aware and alert. Then have a lot of diaper duty.”
Williams also spoke about Serena’s thoughts on having to sit out the current French Open.
“I think it’s not easy for her to watch, because, you know, obviously she knows she can do well here,” Williams said. “So I think that she’s just excited about everything coming up in her life, on and off the court, (and) excited about returning here hopefully next year.”
Serena isn’t too wistful about missing out…at least it didn’t look that way in pics of the tennis champ and finance Alex Ohanian (both pictured on far right, below) in Monaco over the weekend at the Grand Prix.
Venus is looking to win her first French Open after making a record 20th appearance at Roland Garros. She’s played on its clay courts more than any other woman in tennis history, but has only gotten past the quarterfinals once — when she lost the 2002 final to Serena.
Next for Williams is Kurumi Nara of Japan in the second round Wednesday (May 31), at 5 a.m. EST on the Tennis Channel.