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Serena Williams demands an espresso mid-match

ESPN staff
January 5, 2015
Serena Williams was stunned by Flavia Pennetta in the first set before going on to win © Getty Images

There isn't a lot Serena Williams hasn't done on a tennis court in her illustrious career to date - but even this was new.

Having been whitewashed 6-0 in the first set of her Hopman Cup tie with Flavia Pennetta, the world No.1 slumped in her court-side chair at the Perth Arena and knew she had to do something.

She looked up at the umpire and asked: "Is it illegal to order an espresso?"

Williams got her caffeine fix and went on to win the match 0-6 6-3 6-0.

"I am a coffee drinker and I didn't have mine this morning and I was just feeling it," Williams explained. "So I had to get some coffee in me.

"I told them to just give me a shot of espresso. I asked them if it was legal - 'Is it illegal to have a shot of espresso?' - because I had never done it before.

"I needed some espresso. I needed to wake up - the jetlag gets you all the time."

Williams had every reason to be a lethargic. She arrived on Australia's west coast for the mixed team event, where she is partnering John Isner, late on Saturday and played her first match at 10am on Monday morning - a start time Williams is not a fan of.

"My gosh, hopefully I won't have any more, or I will be pulling out … maybe a coffee sponsorship," she said.

But as her game returned, so did her smile - something she says people should get used to in 2015.

She added: "I have never smiled so much in a match before. This year my whole goal is just to have more fun.

"My dad says, 'Serena, just enjoy yourself and I promise you will play better'. So I said, 'Okay, I am trying to relax a bit more and play how I know I can play'."

You can watch Williams' coffee caper here.

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