at the Union Buildings in Pretoria
London – Serena Williams insisted Monday she has no intention of quitting despite having won an elusive Olympic singles gold which allowed her to complete a double Golden Slam.
The 30-year-old American crushed Maria Sharapova for the loss of just one game in the singles final at Wimbledon before teaming up with sister Venus to clinch a third Olympics double crown.
Having also won all four Grand Slam singles and doubles titles, Williams has no intention of calling it quits, believing she can still be a contender even when the next Olympics rolls around at Rio in 2016 when she will be almost 35.
“If I ever feel I cannot be one of the greatest or play my best, then I wouldn't play anymore,” she said.
“But I feel I belong out there, that I can compete, so I don't see the end. I plan on playing in Rio unless there's an act of God that prevents it.”
Williams also still dreams of winning the calendar Grand Slam of all four majors – the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open– in the same year
“That would be a cool objective if I stay fit and healthy,” said Williams, who claimed a 14th singles Grand Slam title when she captured a fifth Wimbledon last month.
The Williams sisters are the first players in tennis history to win four Olympic gold medals.
They have three doubles gold (Sydney in 2000, Beijing in 2008 and London this year) and each of them have a singles gold – Venus won in Sydney before Serena triumphed at the All England Club at the weekend.
Serena added that she believes tennis belongs at the Olympics despite criticisms in some quarters that multi-millionaires like her as well the star-studded NBA basketball teams overshadow the more humble global sports.
“Tennis belongs in the Games,” said Serena, sporting both of her gold medals at a media conference.
“We are all athletes just like the others here. We work every day of our lives to have moments like this. To be mentioned alongside swimming greats or gymnastic greats is awesome.
“All tennis players dream of having an Olympic medal and to compete for the biggest prize of all – the gold medal.” – Sapa-AFP