“She Would Retire”: Former Player Criticizes Serena Williams

Published 01/03/2021, 12:34 PM EST
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 17: Serena Williams of the United States celebrates winning her second round match against Eugene Bouchard of Canada during day four of the 2019 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 17, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)


Serena Williams has mesmerized everybody with her tennis for over two decades now. To go with the army of fans she has won over those years, she also has her critics. And one harsh critic has been the current president of the Romanian Tennis Federation, Ion Tiriac.

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Ion Tiriac has again called Serena Williams out. Seeing her recent performances and age, Tiriac is unhappy that Serena is still continuing her tennis career.

“It was not clear to me exactly what was happening. And it was a math job. At this age and the weight she is now, she does not move as easily as she did 15 years ago.” 

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(Quotes have been translated from Romanian via Google translate)

Serena Williams serves during her match. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

Serena Williams isn’t a strong personality on the WTA tour according to Ion Tiriac

He believes Serena was sensational in the past, but now she should retire.

“Serena was a sensational player. If she had a little decency, she would retire! From all points of view,” Tiriac said.

A few years back, Tiriac had criticized Serena and WTA too in 2018. He had suggested the absence of strong personalities in WTA was the reason behind women’s tennis short of capacity, both in money and audience in tournaments. Tiriac is the owner of Mutua Madrid Open and has been promoting equal pay for female tennis players, but has also said that they bring in only 25 percent of the revenue.

“Today’s women’s tennis lacks strong personalities” With all due respect, but Serena Williams has 36 years and 90 kilograms. I would like to see something else, I would like to see another player like Steffi Graf,” Tiriac said.

Serena Williams reacts during her match. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)

Tiriac is a former player himself. His highest ranking being 8th with the best Grand Slam finish of quarterfinal at the French Open.

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Tiriac was also a manager and sports agent. And he used to manage the likes of former Grand Slam champions Goran Ivanisevic and Marat Safin. He is now a successful businessperson and has become the richest Romanian as well, with a net worth of $1.3 billion.

Serena Williams is obviously not young, nevertheless, there is an air of toughness around her. She is still regarded highly, and thus her retirement talks have never been taken seriously.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1079 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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