Serena Williams praised Roger Federer as "the greatest of all time" after losing to him in a historic doubles match at the Hopman Cup on Tuesday.
Federer teamed up with Switzerland teammate Belinda Bencic and defeated Williams and fellow American Frances Tiafoe in a mixed doubles decider in Perth, Australia.
Federer and Bencic prevailed in straight sets with scores of 4-2 and 4-3, but the highlight of the event came after the result was announced as Federer and Williams were interviewed together, on the court, and gave the Hopman Cup crowd a laugh every minute.
Federer began by thanking Williams for "making this match possible" and said it was "very entertaining."
When Williams spoke, it was clear she's a fan and a friend of Federer's. "It was so fun," she told the crowd. "We grew up together, really, and, after all these years, we've actually never done this and so this was super cool that we got to do this at such a pinnacle point in both our careers. I literally wanted to take pictures and bring my baby out … I was way too excited!"
Federer also said he was "nervous" about returning Williams' serve. "People talk about her serve so much, and I see why it is such a wonderful serve because you just can't read it."
After Williams said she could not read his serve either, Federer said that they share the same qualities but was just glad that he got the win in the end. He even thanked Williams for "missing the ball."
"Your serving, especially the last serve at 3-3, I'm like 'I've got to win this point,' but it's Serena Williams! I was telling myself, 'This is maybe what I've always wanted, a big time moment like this.' And I made the serve, but I actually totally missed the target, so thank you for missing the ball! But it was great fun, and a great champion and you see how focused and determined she is, and I love that about her."
Williams finished the interview by hailing Federer as "the greatest of all time."
She said: "The guy is great, he's the greatest of all time to be honest. Both on the court and off the court. He has such charisma and is a wonderful player.
"I'm trying to narrow it down, I don't know if this is the right thing to say but I think his serve is super underestimated, he has a killer serve, you can't read it, and there's a reason why he's the greatest as you can't be that great and not have such an awesome weapon like that serve," she added. "I watched him all the time but I never knew how amazing it was. It was really cool, hopefully, I can get some tips later on. It was really impressive."
Source: Business insider