Simona Halep won the Wimbledon Women's singles final against Serena Williams, but the 23-time Grand Slam winner is not letting the loss get in the way of what's most important to her. In a post-match press conference, Williams was asked what she would say to those who thought she should just stick to tennis instead of activism.
"Well the day I stop fighting for equality, and for people that look like me and you, will be the day I'm in my grave," she firmly and calmly replied.
Williams has continually faced criticism for standing up against racist and sexist attitudes towards her. Hall of Famer Billie Jean King commented last month that she should focus on playing tennis above all else.
"She's got business, a baby, she's trying to help gender equity, particularly for women of color, she's actually on the Billie Jean King leadership initiative, she and Venus are both advisors for it," Jean King said. "[It makes winning a Slam] much harder. I would like to see her put everything else aside from that. She's got people working on these things."
She recently addressed the U.S. Open controversy from September 2018 once again in a new essay earlier this month, in which she once again apologized to Naomi Osaka. She did, however, assert once again that she she was not treated fairly.
The current No. 1 men's player in the world, Novak Djokovic, has a similar number of career tournament wins and Grand Slam titles as Williams, but has earned $132 million in prize money to her $88.9 million.