The 42-year-old hasn’t played competitively for nearly a year but has teamed up with Jamie Murray, brother of three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray, to compete in mixed doubles.
Venus had previously expressed that she would not participate this week, but requested a last-minute wild-card entry with Murray, and the pair was announced in the mixed doubles draw on Wednesday.
Cheered on by the crowd, the popular pair surprised even themselves by beating Alicja Rosolska and Michael Venus 6-3, 6-7(7), 6-3 on Friday.
“I had no plans to play. I saw the grass and I was excited,” Williams said.
“I was at the French Open, it’s a beautiful event, but my heart wasn’t beating the same way. Not that I could play, but… I had no plans. That’s why I asked (Murray) at the last minute.” .
In her career, Williams has won the Wimbledon women’s singles title five times and the doubles title six times, but she never managed to succeed in the mixed doubles: she lost in the final in 2006.
His partner, Murray, won five mixed doubles titles, including two at Wimbledon in 2007 and 2017.
The pairing seemed to click on Friday, with Murray dominating on serve and Venus sharp at net.
“It’s one of the only ones I haven’t won, so I usually give a little bit more priority here,” Williams added.
Like her sister, 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, there is a feeling this could be one of the last times fans will get to see Venus at Wimbledon. The 40-year-old Williams lost in her first-round match on Tuesday to France’s Harmony Tan.
But while he doesn’t expect to win every match, he says he’s happy to compete at the highest level again.
“It was definitely super last minute. Just inspired by Serena. Like I said, it was amazing. I was so happy to have so much help today,” he said.
The pair will now face British duo Alicia Barnett and Jonny O’Mara in the round of 16 on Sunday.