LONDON – Serena Williams vowed to use the pain of her shock Wimbledon final defeat against Angelique Kerber to fuel her bid for future Grand Slam glory.
Williams was hoping to equal Margaret Court's record of 24 major titles by winning her eighth Wimbledon crown on Saturday. But instead the 36-year-old produced an error-strewn display in a 6-3, 6-3 loss that ranked as her first Wimbledon final defeat since 2008.
While Serena was frustrated by the surprise setback, she took heart from her run to the final in just the fourth tournament of her comeback following daughter Olympia's birth in September.
"It was such an amazing tournament for me. I was really happy to get this far," Williams said.
"It's obviously disappointing, but I cannot be disappointed. I have so much to look forward to and I am just getting started.
"I look forward to continuing to be out here and do what I do best."
Williams endured life-saving surgery after Olympia's difficult delivery and serving as an inspiration to mothers all over the world had been part of the former world one's decision to return to tennis.
After failing to become the first mother to win Wimbledon since Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1980, Williams admitted she was powerless to prevent the inspired Kerber taking the title.
"I am just me, and that's all I can be. To all the mums out there, I was playing for you today, and I tried but Angelique played really well, she played out of her mind," she said.
"She's an incredible person, a really good friend, so I am really happy for her.
"I know she's going to really enjoy it and enjoy the moment."