Nike's powerful new advert shows a nine-year-old Serena Williams being trained by her father

Nike's powerful new advert shows a nine-year-old Serena Williams being trained by her father

Serena Williams is one of the most prolific and inspiring athletes the United States has ever had, but even she had to start somewhere. Her father, Richard Williams, trained her and her sister, Venus, from an early age, and clearly it all paid off for the both of them, who are still competing to this day.

The French Open recently made news for the wrong reason, after they deemed her signature catsuit "inappropriate" for future tournaments. The tennis star wears the compression suit to prevent blood clots, which is a frequent issue for Williams, but the tournament still stuck with their decision, to widespread criticism.

"I’ve had a lot of problems with my blood clots," Serena revealed, speaking to reporters at the French Open. "God, I don’t know how many I’ve had in the past 12 months. I’ve been wearing pants in general a lot when I play, so I can keep the blood circulation going."

In response to all of this, Serena surprised those watching her debut this year at the US Open by competing in a tutu. Apparently, underneath were fishnet tights that could provide compression in a similar way to the catsuit.

Now that the US Open is in session, Nike have used the star in their advertising campaign, with a recent ad seeming to nod towards the recent controversy. "You can take the superhero out of her costume," the ad reads, "but you can never take away her superpowers."

In addition to this, they put out a full commercial using old home movies of Serena being trained by her father, at just nine years old. In the video, you can hear Richard Williams telling her to imagine she is at the US Open - a tournament she has now won a stunning six times - before we cut to the present.

You can also see her father celebrating her modern day success in some of the footage, making this video all the more heartwarming. In addition to this, another video of Richard went viral recently, this time as he defended a 14-year-old Venus' confidence during an interview.

He interrupts a male interviewer who is questioning her self-confidence, by pointing out that his remarks will have a big impact on the young girl, so she should be allowed to believe in herself during this time in her life. It's a pretty amazing video, and you can see it in the tweet below:

Venus has won seven Grand Slam titles in her career so far, something her confidence in her own abilities surely played a part in.

Serena is now a 23-time Grand Slam tennis champion, and comfortably one of the greatest female players of all time. She is currently eight tournaments into her comeback, after she took time out from the sport to give birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr.