05 August 2020

Serena Williams on her migraine attacks: ‘I had to play through the pain'

Grand Slam champion Serena Williams has said she had to ‘play through the pain’ of migraines throughout her career.

She suffers with periodic migraine attacks, which she describes as ‘debilitating, throbbing pain,' and has done so since her early 20’s.

“Migraine isn’t a knee injury — it’s something you can’t physically see,” she told People magazine.

“You can’t really say, ‘Oh, Dad, I have a migraine. I’m going to stop playing.’ People are like, ‘I don’t see swelling. I don’t see bruising. Tough it out.’ I got used to playing through the pain.”

She added it’s difficult to face the press after playing with a migraine and losing the match. 

“You can't go into a press conference with the media asking, ‘Well, what happened?’ and say ‘Well I had a migraine attack.' I had to figure out a way to work through it.”

Williams will return to the court this month, most notably at the US Open which begins on August 31.

Tournaments, for now, will be behind closed doors as a result of the corornavirus pandemic and the star has commented on how she will cope without crowds.

“I’ve always played with such a big crowd. Without fans, how will I do? I don’t even know. But I look at it as another experience. A wild experience.”

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