Professional tennis player Madison Keys is quickly becoming the latest ‘it’ girl of professional tennis. Last week, Keys made headlines for advancing to the semi-finals after beating Venus Williams at the Australian Open. Yesterday, the 19-year-old took on women’s singles tennis No. 1 player Serena Williams and lost in the final score 7-6(5) 6-2.
After the match, Keys expressed her respect and admiration for the legendary player in her post game interview.
“Serena’s always been one of the best, and she will forever be one of the best tennis players in women’s tennis.” “So much respect for that and so much respect towards her and her game.”
For quite some time, Venus and Serena Williams have held the torch for Black women in professional tennis. With the lack of diversity in the sport, it was great to see Keys thrive at this year’s Australian Open.
Serena shared our sentiments:
“It’s good to see another American, another African-American, in the semifinals playing so well,” the 33-year-old tennis star said. “Regardless, there’s going to be an American in the finals, so that is great. It’s also great for me and Venus because we know that finally there’s other Americans that are constantly playing well and playing better, showing that they want to be the world’s greatest.”
Keys, who is bi-racial –prefers not to be identified by her race.
In an interview with The New York Times, Keys was asked if she saw the significance in being a young African-American taking on the Williams sisters at the Australian Open. Though honored to be mentioned among The Williams Sisters as women in professional tennis, Keys revealed that she does not identify herself as African-American (or white).
“It’s something that’s always there obviously, but I’m very much right in the middle,” she said. “I don’t really think of it. I don’t really identify myself as white or African-American. I’m just me. I’m Madison.” …
Congrats to both Madison and The Williams Sisters!