“Most Negativity Comes From Folks Who Are Miserable”: Alexis Ohanian Reiterates Serena Williams’ Words at Mouratoglou Academy

Published 06/17/2021, 8:43 AM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – June 6, 2021 Serena Williams of the U.S. in action during her fourth round match against Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier


Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian has shared a clip showing his wife and 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams delivering a motivational speech to graduates at her longtime coach Patrick Mouratoglou’s tennis academy in France.

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The clip shows Serena, clad in a baseball cap and a sleeveless shirt, urging the graduates to shut their ears to naysayers and keep chasing their dreams with single-minded devotion.

She says there are people who will keep adding to the negativities and external distractions around an athlete, but the person concerned should be strong-willed enough to ignore them and keep the faith in herself.

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“Believe in you, no matter what”: Serena Williams

“Believe in you, no matter what. There are a lot of people that say ‘you can’t do this’ or ‘you can’t do that’ or ‘you’re not going to be good enough’. ‘Can’t’ is a huge word out there but when someone tells me I can’t, really what that means is that they can’t. They’ll never do it,” Serena said.

She added that the discouraging words of the naysayers or their apparent lack of faith in one’s ability are meant to stop an athlete from chasing their dreams.

“What they are really saying to you is that, ‘I can’t’ and they’re trying to stop you from achieving your dreams. So whenever anyone says, ‘you can’t’ or ‘you’re not good enough’, just know that you really are and they’re just probably jealous of you,” added the 39-year-old American.

Alexis Ohanian shares the Serena clip on Twitter

Sharing the clip on his official Twitter page, Ohanian said his wife knows more than anyone else what it takes to defy critics and naysayers.

“My wife knows a thing or two about doing things most people said she couldn’t. Reality is, most negativity comes from folks who are so broken/hurt/lost/miserable, they’ve nowhere else to put it — it spills out of them,” the American added.

Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 31, 2021 Serena Williams of the U.S. reacts during her first round match against Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

Watch This Link: One of the Most Dramatic Victory of Serena Williams

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Serena failed to end her wait for a 24th Grand Slam title this year, crashing out in the semifinals of the Australian Open after losing to eventual champion Naomi Osaka and the fourth round at Roland-Garros after going down to Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan.

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She would resume her quest for the elusive 24th at Wimbledon.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

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Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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