Venus Williams gets first top 50 win since 2019 in 3-hour upset at Birmingham Classic

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - JUNE 19: Venus Williams of United States celebrates winning match point against Camila Giorgi of Italy in the Women's First Round match during Day Three of the Rothesay Classic Birmingham at Edgbaston Priory Club on June 19, 2023 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images for LTA)
Venus Williams hit a career milestone Monday. (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images for LTA)

Venus Williams is still writing her story. The 43-year-old icon defeated No. 48 Camila Giorgi 7-6 (5), 4-6, 7-6 (6) in a three-hour thriller at the Birmingham Classic on Monday. It marked her first win over a player in the top 50 in almost four years.

Ranked No. 697, Williams thwarted Giorgi's comeback attempt toward the end of the match for a major upset.

The seven-time Grand Slam champion loves the grass, and it showed Monday in her vintage performance.

She didn't take the win lightly, celebrating with big smiles and fist pumps before expressing what the showing meant to her in a post-match interview.

"Hey everyone, it's nice to see you guys. I haven't been here in a few years and not because I didn't want to be, I just wasn't really on tour," she said with a laugh.

The five-time Wimbledon singles champion was out for six months with a hamstring injury she sustained in Auckland.

"This is great for me. I haven't played a lot of matches and it's great to come through," she added.

There was concern that Williams might be hindered by an injury Sunday, as she used a medical timeout in the first set when she was leading 3-2. When she returned to court with her right knee braced, Williams was met with roaring applause.

"It was touch and go there, and I felt the support," Williams said.

The victory also represented a rebound from the loss she took in her return last week to 17-year-old Celine Naef in the first round of the Libema Open in the Netherlands.

Williams has an opportunity to reach another milestone in her next match, since she hasn't won back-to-back matches since she made it to the Cincinnati quarterfinals in 2019.

She can change that when she faces No. 2 seed Jelena Ostapenko or 18-year-old Linda Noskova.