Everyone knows about the swing. Everyone knows about the swagger. But what most Americans don’t know about Venus Williams is how she changed the course of her sport. In a stunning case that captured the attention of the European public beginning in 2005, Williams challenged the long-held practice of paying women tennis players less money than their male counterparts at the French Open and Wimbledon. Williams lobbied Parliament, UNESCO and Fleet Street for financial parity, including a poignant op-ed piece in The London Times that convinced many people that the tournament organizers at Wimbledon were “on the wrong side of history.” The boys clubs at Roland Garros and Wimbledon finally relented in 2007 - the same year Venus became the first women’s Wimbledon champion to earn as much as the men’s (Roger Federer). So to her seven major championships, another victory can be added.moreless
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