Venus Williams continues to defy the odds as she seals huge win

Kevin Palmer
Venus Williams in action
A delighted Venus Williams

The sands of time are refusing to catch up with 43-year-old Venus Williams.

Four years after she last beat a player ranked in the top 20 of the WTA Rankings, this evergreen champion rolled back the years as she overcame the No 16 seed Veronika Kudermetova in the first round of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.

Her younger sister Serena may have made her exit from the tennis stage, but Venus continues to battle on and she showed moments of vintage brilliance to secure a 6-4, 7-5 victory.

Williams is currently ranked at ranked No 533 in the WTA standings, but she confirmed she was worthy of her wildcard will a display that gave her a moral-boosting triumph on American soil.

“I just kept telling myself, ‘I just want to win this point — not the match, just one point,’” said Williams.

“When you break things down like that, big problems become small problems. That’s how I did that.”

Williams had lost her last 10 matches against top-20 players since beating then-No. 5 Kiki Bertens in 2019 at Cincinnati and it was the same venue that provided her with a valuable win.

Williams may still be playing on the WTA Tour, but she is also expanding her business empire with a thriving YouTube channel.

In an interview with The Globe and Mail in Canada, she explained why she is speaking to her fans on the social media platform.

“YouTube is a place where you can bring who you are to life,” she said.

“It’s so nice to see the authentic side of people. There’s no limit to the audience you can reach. And whether it’s a sports audience or not, I like to talk about motivation as well. I’m really focused on health and wellness.

“I really am passionate about wellness, actually. I’m super passionate about it, always learning, trying new things. I like to think I would have been passionate about it even if I hadn’t played sports, because my mom was

“I’m obsessed with feeling good. And taking care of myself. And those are actually my hobbies. I can’t imagine a life where I didn’t do that.

“Before I made any content on YouTube, I had been so used to other people telling my story. YouTube was my chance for me to tell my story the way that I wanted. And that was so empowering.

“Once I got started, I was like, wow, this is a chance to tell my story the way I wanted it. And I can go and do whatever I want. I felt free.

“I felt like, for the first time, it was really my voice and not someone else’s take as a producer or writer.”

READ MORE: Why huge prize money difference in Cincinnati is NOT a gender equality issue