There are already so many reasons we love Serena Williams. Her athletic achievements and her candor about topics like her body image and her struggle with postpartum depression only make us love her more. Now, she’s putting that honesty to good use once more in a new interview (conducted shortly before she officially pulled out of the 2018 French Open) wherein she shut down one reporter who got a little too familiar with her, lobbing a ridiculous question about longtime rival Maria Sharapova’s supermodel looks at her.
The interview took place on Saturday with Bill Simons from Inside Tennis according to Today. There’s no explanation about what led up to this moment, but at one point, Simons commented to Williams, “I know you want to get back to Olympia [her daughter], work with me here please.”
Williams replied, “Work with me,” and Simons shot back “We’re in this together, baby.” We can all agree that’s a pretty unprofessional way to talk to anyone, let alone a woman of Williams’ caliber.
But Simons wasn’t done yet. He pressed on to ask a question that he said he’s been waiting 14 years to ask. “After the 2004 Wimbledon match with Maria, I had the opportunity to interview Donald Trump on his L.A. golf course, and he said that Maria’s shoulders were incredibly alluring and then he came up with his incredible analysis: that you were intimidated by her supermodel good looks. My question is: Have you ever been intimidated by anyone on a tennis court, and what are your thoughts about that occurrence?”
Williams, being the amazing woman that she is, didn’t suffer the silliness of the question. Instead, she clapped back: “I honestly don’t have any thoughts about that. I can’t say I have been intimidated by anyone. That’s all. That’s it.”
When word got out about Simons ridiculous question, folks on social media jumped to Williams’ defense: “Probably one of the stupidest interview questions ever asked. And I doubt that Serena Williams is intimidated by anything,” tweeted one fan.
“That’s comical! Serena is Supermodel beautiful, intelligent, athletic, a businesswoman, wife, mother and in case anyone’s been living under a rock for the last 20 years a CHAMPION!!!” wrote another.
Another commented on how hard they cringed just reading the transcript (not gonna lie — we did too).
I have never physically cringed as hard as when I read this in Serena’s transcript. Wow. pic.twitter.com/60wnSWG6En
— Jeff Donaldson (@jddtennis) June 2, 2018
Williams was set to meet Sharapova in the French Open on Monday but withdrew from the match shortly before it began. She cited an injury to her pectoral muscle that is preventing her from playing.