Venus Williams was on the verge of Olympic history Sunday. If she won the doubles match against fellow Americans Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Jack Sock she would have been the first five-time Olympic champion in Olympic tennis history. Since 2000 she has accrued 4 gold medals. She and teammate Rajeev Ram put up a fierce fight with a mid-match comeback, but it was not enough. Mattek-Sands and Sock won in a 10 point tiebreak.
Williams was also hoping to become the first athlete to win gold in singles, doubles and mixed doubles. She has been sick with a virus since she arrived in Rio and had not originally planned to play mixed doubles, but joined Ram when she lost in the first round of singles and doubles. Ram was a last minute substitute for Team USA after doubles champions Bob and Mike Bryan pulled out.
Venus’ sister and doubles partner, Serena, also lost in the first round of doubles and singles, failing to defend her gold medal from Beijing. Serena won her 22nd Grand Slam title at Wimbledon last month. She doesn’t seem too worried about her short run at this year’s Olympics; Serena has been an enthusiastic supporter of fellow black female athletes on Team USA like The Simones—Biles and Manuel—who are making history and beasting the competition. She posted congratulations on her Instagram and has been showing tons of support on SnapChat as well. If anyone is going to fault her for her less-than-superb showing this year, I want to see proof of their 23 world championsjihps.
Between the two of them, the Williams sisters have won 120 women’s singles titles, 43 women’s doubles titles, 29 grand slam women’s singles titles, 28 gradn slam women’s doubles titles, 4 grand slam mixed doubles titles, a gold medal each in summer Olympic singles, and 6 golds (3 a piece) for summer Olympics doubles titles. Combined they have earned almost $110,000,000 throughout their careers; Venus has been playing professionally since 1994 (age 14) and Serena since 1995 (age 14).