Meghan Markle says she feels 'traumatised' recalling Serena Williams play tennis after 'watching pressure'

Meghan Markle claims she "finds it traumatising" to "go back to the moment" watching Serena Williams play tennis regularly, as the Duchess recalled "watching the pressure"


Meghan has finally launched the first episode of her new Spotify podcast, Archetypes.

The series will see the Duchess of Sussex investigate "labels that try to hold women back".

And in the first episode, titled 'The Misconception of Ambition with Serena Williams', Meghan talks at length with the tennis legend about her astonishing career.

In one segment, the two talk openly about moments in Ms Williams' time as a player where she felt she was treated unfairly.

Meghan says: "There are certain things I know you won't want to say about your experience but I lived through a lot of that with you."

She adds: "Oh my gosh you were treated completely unfairly."

Serena Williams
Serena Williams
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry

Ms Williams replies: "It wasn't just one thing. The reason I have trauma from it is because it's been five things or more.

"The first being the reason Hawk-Eye became a thing was they kept calling my balls out and they weren't even close to the line."

Meghan then explains that Ms Williams is "referring here to her US Open quarter-final match against Jennifer Capriati in 2004".

Ms Williams adds: "In that match, I gained this fear of hitting because every time I hit a ball they would call it out.

"No matter how close it was or how far it was.

"It became impossible to play because they just kept calling them out."

Ms Williams says she became "afraid to be Serena" at one point and found herself questioning why she received so much criticism while it was considered okay for men to "come on and pump their fists".

She recalls "an article saying a guy had been passionate but I'd had a meltdown", asking: "Wait, how did have a meltdown but this guy was passionate?"

To this, Meghan points out: "The double standard. There's something that happens in being archetyped and it's really dehumanising."

And the Duchess goes on to say that she herself feels traumatised recalling moments of Ms Williams' career.

She concludes: "I think of that from my personal standpoint of being in the box with your mum and your sister, and watching you win, and at the same time watching the pressure.

"The external pressure that I knew was mounting. We'd be at the Open or Wimbledon and knowing that there's a real person behind all of that.

"I find it traumatising to go back to that moment where I feel you were treated so unfairly."