Tennis star Serena Williams outlines frustration video

United States tennis star Serena Williams.
Mike Stobe

United States tennis star Serena Williams.

Tennis star Serena Williams says "too often women are not supported enough" and has urged females to strive for excellence.

Williams - who will play in the ASB Classic in Auckland in January - has written an open letter outlining her frustration in regards to being a female sportsperson.

Included is equal pay.

"When the subject of equal pay comes up, it frustrates me because I know firsthand that I, like you, have done the same work and made the same sacrifices as our male counterparts. I would never want my daughter to be paid less than my son for the same work. Nor would you," she said.

Williams also outlined her frustration at being labelled a female athlete and not just an athlete.

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"As we know, women have to break down many barriers on the road to success.

"One of those barriers is the way we are constantly reminded we are not men, as if it is a flaw.

"People call me one of the "world's greatest female athletes". Do they say LeBron is one of the world's best male athletes? Is Tiger? Federer? Why not? They are certainly not female.

"We should never let this go unchallenged. We should always be judged by our achievements, not by our gender," Williams said.

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"My dream wasn't like that of an average kid, my dream was to be the best tennis player in the world. Not the best "female" tennis player in the world."

By publicly voicing her frustrations Williams hopes to help other females coming through the ranks.

"It is my hope that my story, and yours, will inspire all young women out there to push for greatness and follow their dreams with steadfast resilience. We must continue to dream big, and in doing so, we empower the next generation of women to be just as bold in their pursuits."

 

 - Stuff

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