Serena Williams shares how she told Olympia about winning Australian Open pregnant

In 2017 January, Olympia was in the belly when Williams won her 23rd Grand Slam title at the Australian Open.

by Dzevad Mesic
Serena Williams shares how she told Olympia about winning Australian Open pregnant
© Getty Images Sport - Hannah Peters

Serena Williams says her daughter Olympia is starting to ask certain questions and inquire why so many people know her mother, which led to the American tennis icon revealing to her daughter that she was in the belly when her mother won a Grand Slam.

On September 1st, 2017, Williams and her husband Alexis Ohanian welcomed their first child when Olympia was born. That year, Williams made one of the best sporting headlines after winning the Australian Open while eight weeks pregnant. 

In 2017 January, Williams won her seventh Australian Open title without a dropped set during the entire tournament at Melbourne Park. For those who were following the 2017 Australian Open, there wasn't anything strange in Williams dominantly winning a Grand Slam because he had a history of doing that. 

But after the Australian Open, Williams started missing tournaments. Then in April of that year, Williams announced on Instagram that she was pregnant with her first child. 

Olympia is now six and she was in attendance during Williams' farewell at the 2022 US Open. 

"Yeah, Olympia's now at an age where she's like, ‘Listen, I am wondering, why are you so famous?’ She was like, ‘You're a great tennis player.’ And so I told her the other day that she actually was in my belly when I won a big tournament [the 2017 Australian Open] and she was surprised. She's at an age now where I can kind of open up to her a little bit more," Williams told People.

Serena Williams and daughter Olympia
Serena Williams and daughter Olympia © Getty Images Sport - Al Bello

Williams was eight weeks pregnant when she won the Australian Open 

Just before the start of the 2017 Australian Open, Williams received the news that she was pregnant. After learning about the news, Williams decided to keep it a secret and only shared it with her husband and sister Venus Williams. Later, it was revealed that even coach Patrick Mouratoglou wasn't aware that the American tennis legend was pregnant during the 2017 Australian Open. 

But on April 19th, 2017, Williams shared the news with the entire world.

"My Dearest Baby, You gave me the strength I didn’t know I had. You taught me the true meaning of serenity and peace. I can't wait to meet you," Williams said in an Instagram post at the time.

"I can't wait for you to join the players box next year. But most importantly, I am so happy to share being number one in the world with you.... once again today. On @alexisohanian bday. from the world's oldest number one to the world's youngest number one. -Your Mommy."

Serena Williams
Serena Williams © Getty Images Sport - Hannah Peters

The concerns Williams had during the 2017 Australian Open

Overcoming challenges was something to which Williams was well-accustomed but competing while pregnant was something completely different. Naturally so, Williams started asking herself questions and wondering how it would all look and if she would experience any issues. 

But then, Williams sat with herself and decided to stop overthinking and only focus on what she could control.

"You hear all these stories about people when they're pregnant — they get sick, they get really tired, really stressed out... I had to really take all that energy and put it in a paper bag, so to say, and throw it away," Williams said during one of her interviews in 2017. 

"I really felt that I didn’t have time to deal with any extra emotions, any extra anything, because, pregnant or not, no one knew, and I was supposed to win that tournament as I am every tournament that I show up [for]. If I don’t win, it’s actually much bigger news."

When the 2017 Australian Open started, Williams was winning routinely and she pretty easily made another Grand Slam final at Melbourne Park that year. In the final, Williams played against her sister Venus and won 6-4 6-4. 

Serena Williams
Serena Williams © Getty Images Sport - Scott Barbour

After being out of action for 14 months, Williams launched her post-pregnancy comeback in 2018 March at a WTA 1000 tournament in Indian Wells. It didn't take long before Williams started making big results again, having reached the Wimbledon and US Open finals that year. Unfortunately for the American, she fell just short of winning both tournaments after losing to Angelique Kerber in the 2018 Wimbledon final and to Naomi Osaka in the US Open final, respectively.

The following year, Williams again made the finals at The Championships and Flushing Meadows - but again ended on the losing side, this time to Simona Halep and Bianca Andreescu, respectively. 

In 2022 September, Williams' astonishing career ended with a three-set defeat to Ajla Tomljanovic in the US Open third round. 

While Williams returned to being one of the best in the world after giving birth, she didn't manage to win another Grand Slam and finished with 23 Majors to her name.

Serena Williams Australian Open