Serena Williams sends strong message with 'mother, champion, queen' French Open 2019 outfit

Francesca Specter
·Yahoo Style UK deputy editor
PARIS, FRANCE May 27.  Serena Williams of the United States warming up before her match against Vitalia Diatchenko of Russia on Court Philippe-Chatrier in the Women"u2019s Singles first round match at the 2019 French Open Tennis Tournament at Roland Garros on May 27th 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
Serena Williams in her statement poncho at the French Open. [Photo: Getty]

A year after Serena Williams wore - and was subsequently banned from wearing - a bodysuit while playing in the French Open, the tennis pro has returned to the court in another statement outfit.

The mum-of-one walked onto the court in a black and white cape covered in words, before taking it off to reveal a paired-down version.

Explaining her look after the match, Williams – who beat opponent Vitalia Diatchenko in three sets – explained the outfit’s significance.

“On the outfit it has words in French, and it says ‘Queen’, it says ‘Champion’, and it says ‘Mom’,” she told press.

READ MORE: Serena Williams responds to catsuit ban by wearing tutu on court

PARIS, FRANCE May 27.  Serena Williams of the United States in action against Vitalia Diatchenko of Russia on Court Philippe-Chatrier in the Women"u2019s Singles first round match at the 2019 French Open Tennis Tournament at Roland Garros on May 27th 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
Williams wore a crop top and skirt below her poncho. [Photo: Getty]

“Those are things that mean a lot to me and [they are] a reminder … just to remind everyone that they, you know, can be champions and are queens.”

The look, designed by Off-White designer Virgil Abloh for Nike, also had the word “Déesse” written on it, which translates to “Goddess” in French.

Asked if it was a heavy weight to carry, she responds: “Yeah, it is a lot to carry. But so is being Serena Williams.”

Many people celebrated Williams’ style on Twitter, with some calling her a “role model”.

READ MORE: Serena Williams praised for bodysuits and fishnet ensemble worn during Australian open

PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 27: Serena Williams of USA wears a special Nike jacket - with French text reading 'Champion, Championne', 'Queen, Reine', 'Goddess, Deesse' and 'Mother, Mere' - during the warm up prior to her first round victory on day 2 of the 2019 French Open at Roland Garros stadium on May 27, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)
A view of Williams' statement poncho, which included the words for "Champion" and "Queen", from the back. [Photo: Getty]

Not everyone has praised Williams’ look, however, with controversial television presenter Piers Morgan calling her outfit “diabolical”.

Williams has become equally well known for her stand-out court style as much as her sporting prowess in recent years.

From the bodysuit and fishnets combination she wore during the Australian Open to her designer tutu at the US Open, she has more than established herself as a fashion icon.

Not only has her style been appreciated by sports viewers, it has also helped to break dress code boundaries.

The ‘Black Panther’ inspired catsuit, a compression garment designed to help fight off the blood clots following giving birth, that Serena wore to play in last year’s French Open sparked a debate over what should and should not be allowed on court.

In her role as a Nike ambassador, Williams has also been a figurehead for women in sports, urging others to “Dream Crazier” in an advert she starred in earlier this year.