Williams said she feels "like a warrior princess, kind of", when she wears the outfit.
Serena Williams reacts during her French Open first round match against Kristyna Pliskova. Her haul of 23 Grand Slam singles crowns beats Steffi Graf's total by one, and is just one shy of Margaret Court's record 24. But having been bedridden for six weeks after suffering a series of complications, including a pulmonary embolism that led to multiple surgeries, Williams is only too aware of what she had to overcome to get herself ready for Paris.
But blessed with one of the sharpest tennis minds in the business, Barty's game plan will be to boss Williams from side to side in an attempt to exhaust the underdone grand slam colossus.
Tuesday's return was striking, from Williams' powerful shots to her outfit, which called to mind the "catsuit" she wore at the 2002 U.S. Open. "It's really fun", she said in reference to the fictional African nation which features in the Marvel comics and was the centrepiece of the Black Panther movie blockbuster.
She added that her attempts at breaking into the fashion world to design clothing outside of tennis were shut down many, many times. But two years ago, I met this man, nearly out of nowhere.
For all that has changed during her time away from Grand Slam tennis, so much seemed familiar on Tuesday.
The suit is, however, not only fun but also functional. "I was terrified, and it was a whole new kind of fear". The fear that I might not come back as strong as I was.
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Noblesville West Middle School Principal Stacey Swan and superintendent Beth Niedermeyer were also slated to be in attendance. The middle school was scheduled to remain closed Tuesday to provide counseling for students, staff and their families.
"I'm just happy to win a match here, " Williams told the crowd in Court Philippe Chatrier.
In her on-court interview after the win, Williams explained the look. That didn't stop her from crushing her competitor, who's now ranked at No. 70 in the world.
"I actually breast fed for a really, really, really long time, and so I just had this real connection with my daughter".
Williams will play her second-round match against 17th-ranked Ashleigh Barty, who is very impressed by her opponent's comeback: "What Serena's done to be able to get back, along with Azarenka as well, and a lot of the other girls who are coming back after pregnancy, is a pretty fantastic thing". "Yeah, so I think there are definitely some differences, but there is a lot of similarities, as well".
It sure seems like Serena Williams can do it all. "It's because I want to get home to see Olympia, because I have been here all day".
"I'm concerned how that's going to work out for me, because normally in Grand Slams I do spend a lot of time at the site".