Serena Williams's Husband, Alexis Ohanian, Says 'She's Just Getting Started' After Wimbledon Final Defeat

There was to be no fairytale ending as Serena Williams sought to win a 23rd Grand Slam title just 10 months after suffering life-threatening complications from giving birth to her first child. But, despite a painful loss to German Angelique Kerber in Saturday's Wimbledon final, Williams's husband Alexis Ohanian said she was "just getting started."

Ohanian released an Instagram post shortly after Williams's defeat outlining what his wife had gone through to get back to the biggest stage in tennis.

"Days after our baby girl was born, I kissed my wife goodbye before surgery and neither of us knew if she would be coming back," he wrote. "We just wanted her to survive—10 months later, she's in the #Wimbledon final.

He continued: "@serenawilliams will be holding a trophy again soon—she's got the greatest one waiting at home for her. Our family knows she'll win many more trophies, too. She's just getting started. And I couldn't be more proud."

In an emotional on-court interview following her 6-3 6-3 defeat to 11th seed Kerber, Williams offered a similar message of defiance while paying tribute to all mothers watching.

"It was such an amazing tournament for me," she said. "I was really hoping to get this far," Williams said while visibly fighting back tears. "It's obviously disappointing, but I can't be disappointed. I have so much to look forward to. I'm literally just getting started.

"I was really happy to get this far. For all the moms out there, I was playing for you today."

There was another notable mother watching on, with the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton sitting in the Royal Box alongside her new sister-in-law Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex.

Williams saw her ranking drop to 181 in the world after her long absence from the tour following her victory in the 2017 Australian Open. While away she underwent multiple life-saving surgeries after a blood clot formed on her lungs shortly after she gave birth. For six weeks, she couldn't even get of bed.

She returned to the WTA tour earlier this year, but it wasn't until arriving at Wimbledon, a tournament she has won seven times, that she began to look like the dominant player of old. Williams is now likely to set her sights on the U.S. Open next month, when she will once again try to equal Margaret Court's all-time record of 24 Grand Slam singles titles.

Serena Williams
Serena Williams of the U.S. holds up the runners up trophy after the Wimbledon women's singles final against Germany's Angelique Kerber, London, England, July 14, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville