The Rough Humble Beginning Of Venus And Serena Williams Throughout Their Incredible Careers

They’re known as two of the greatest players in the history of tennis, but Serena and Venus Williams are more than just sports stars. Throughout their incredible careers, the sisters have blazed a trail both on and off the court, breaking down barriers again and again.

ET Canada takes a look back at some of the Williams sisters’ most memorable moments and their lasting legacy.

1 of 10 Humble Beginnings

Humble Beginning
Humble Beginning

Serena and Venus began life in the city of Compton, California at a time when the city was wracked with homelessness, drugs, crime and gangs.
The little girls spent hours everyday practicing under the watchful eye of their proud dad Richard, who was dedicated to making his daughters successful tennis players.

2 of 10 Trailblazers
Serena and Venus' Trailblazers

In 1999, Venus and Serena earned victory over Martina Hingis and Anna Kournikova, making them the first sisters to ever win a doubles Grand Slam.

3 of 10 Sisters First

Sisters First
Sisters First

Despite their rivalry on the court, the Williams sisters remain incredibly close.

“I have a sister, and she knows exactly what I’m going through,” Serena told Sports Illustrated in 2014. “She knows everything about me. She is the only person I can really talk to after I lose, because only she knows how I feel.”

4 of 10 Serving Up Looks

Serving Up Looks
Serving Up Looks

It didn’t take long for the Williams sisters to earn a reputation for being trendsetters on the court, thanks to their fashion-forward match day ensembles.
They duo have collaborated with brands such as Nike and Puma in the past, as well as creating their own fashion lines.

5 of 10 Olympic Heroes

Olympic Heroes
Olympic Heroes

Serena and Venus are the only tennis players in history with four Olympic gold medals after winning one each in singles and three in doubles together.

6 of 10 Red Carpet Queens

Red Carpet Queens
Red Carpet Queens

7 of 10 Shutting Down Bullies

Shutting Down Bullies
Shutting Down Bullies

Serena is never afraid to hit back at her haters.
In response to body shamers, she told Good Morning America in 2015, “I embrace me and I love how I look. I love that I am a full woman, and I’m strong and I’m powerful and I’m beautiful at the same time and there’s nothing wrong with that.”

8 of 10 Fighting For What’s Right

Fighting For What's Right
Fighting For What’s Right

Throughout her illustrious career, Venus has been a vocal advocate on the issue of equal pay for male and female tennis players.

9 of 10 Family Matters

Family Matters
Family Matters

After Serena welcomed daughter Olympia with Alexis Ohanian in 2017, Venus became a doting aunt.
“She’s great,” Serena said of her sister, while speaking with TODAY Parents in 2019. “None of us grew up! We’re all just a bunch of kids having fun.”

10 of 10 Life On Screen

Life On Screen
Life On Screen

Venus and Serena served as executive producers on “King Richard”, a sports drama about their dad’s journey toward making them the superstars they are today.
Starring Will Smith, the movie has been slated as one of the top contenders for this year’s Oscars.

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