Serena Williams praises Meghan Markle as epitome of strength and confidence after Oprah interview


Serena Williams has praised her friend Meghan Markle saying she is the ‘epitome of class and strength’ following her bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey.  

The 23-time Grand Slam winner, 39, spoke to Behnaz Ghahramani the Chief Marketing Officer for Stuart Weitzman for their debut episode of the Shine Series, where she discussed her long-term friendship with the royal, also 39.

She described Meghan, who is currently living in Montecito, California in a $14million mansion with husband Prince Harry, 36, and son Archie, one, as ‘the strongest person she knows’.      

‘Meghan is a great person and I think the epitome of strength, the epitome of confidence, the epitome of just selflessness, and the epitome of everything is just her and everything that she’s gone through,’ the tennis player told the Shine series.   

Serena Williams has praised her friend Meghan Markle saying she is the 'epitome of class and strength' following her bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey. They're pictured together in 2014

Serena Williams has praised her friend Meghan Markle saying she is the ‘epitome of class and strength’ following her bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey. They’re pictured together in 2014

‘You can see from the interview that it wasn’t easy. But she had so much poise and she still had so much class,’ she added.

‘I just think that she is the strongest person I know. I don’t know anyone else that could handle anything on such a global scale the way that she’s had to handle things that are just untrue – minute after minute. 

‘Not even day after day. Just minute after minute, another untrue allegation being thrown at her,’ she added. 

‘I think it was important for me to say something because I’m tired of sitting back and seeing all this negativity that’s just not true,’ she went on.

Serena, who has one child Olympia,  with husband Alexis Ohanian, added that she wanted to make sure her daughter grows up in a world where women don’t ‘tear each other down’.  

‘I compete against women all the time. We can go tooth and nails, but it doesn’t mean we have that we have anything against each other. I actually support you and I want the best for you.’

Serena said Meghan, who is currently living in Montecito, California in a $14million mansion with husband Prince Harry, 36, and son Archie, one, as 'the strongest person she knows'. She is pictured with Prince Harry during the Oprah interview

Serena said Meghan, who is currently living in Montecito, California in a $14million mansion with husband Prince Harry, 36, and son Archie, one, as ‘the strongest person she knows’. She is pictured with Prince Harry during the Oprah interview

‘I really just hope that I inspire Olympia and the next generation of girls to believe that anything is possible. And, mostly, to believe in themselves’.

Stuart Weitzman is an American shoe designer who’s made shoes for an array of A-listers, including Beyonce and Taylor Swift, while Serena is a global spokesperson for the brand.

Meghan and Serena have been close friends since 2014 after having their first ‘real hangout’ at the DirecTV Beach Bowl, although they briefly crossed paths in 2010 at the SuperBowl.

Meghan, who was starring on Suits at the time,  wrote on her now defunct blog The Tig:  ‘We hit it off immediately, taking pictures, laughing through the flag football game we were both playing in, and chatting not about tennis or acting, but about all the good old fashioned girlie stuff. So began our friendship’.

In a statement on Twitter after the interview aired, Williams - who was among those to attend Meghan's wedding to Prince Harry - described her as a 'selfless friend' who 'teaches me every day what it means to be truly noble'

In a statement on Twitter after the interview aired, Williams – who was among those to attend Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry – described her as a ‘selfless friend’ who ‘teaches me every day what it means to be truly noble’

It comes after Serena defended Meghan following a backlash during the bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey.

 In a statement on Twitter after the interview aired, Williams – who was among those to attend Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry – described her as a ‘selfless friend’ who ‘teaches me every day what it means to be truly noble’.

‘Her words illustrate the pain and cruelty she’s experienced,’ Williams wrote.

‘I know first hand the sexism and racism institutions and the media use to vilify women and people of color to minimize us, to break us down and demonize us. We must recognize our obligation to decry malicious, unfounded gossip and tabloid journalism.

‘The mental health consequences of systemic oppression and victimization are devastating, isolating and all too often lethal.

‘I want Meghan’s daughter, my daughter and your daughter to live in a society that is driven by respect.

‘Keep in your memory the fruitage of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.’

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