SERENA and Venus Williams’ half-sister has said that despite their father abandoning her to raise the twins to become millionaire tennis stars – she wouldn’t swap places with them.
Sabrina Williams, who works as a hospice chaplain, slammed her estranged father who is the subject of the new Hollywood biopic “King Richard”.Sabrina, Venus and Serena’s half-sister said she would not trade places with the tennis pros[/caption] Serena and Venus’ father Richard is being portrayed in a new movie starring Will Smith[/caption] Serena (L) and Venus (R) went on to become millionaires[/caption]
In an exclusive interview with The Sun, Sabrina said: “I wouldn’t swap places with Venus or Serena.
“I was just driving now, listening to music and thinking, would I change anything about my life? No, I wouldn’t, I’d go through all the struggles I went through again.”
Richard married Sabrina’s late mom Betty Johnson in Los Angeles in the early sixties.
They had four other children – Richard III, 56, Ronner, 55, Reluss, 54, and Reneeka, 49.
When Sabrina was just eight and another sister eight weeks old, Richard dumped his wife and five kids, allegedly walking out of the door to buy her a bike – and never returning.
Richard, now 79, went on to marry Serena and Venus’s mother Oracene and made it his number one priority for his daughters to become tennis professionals, even writing a 78-page manifesto outlining his blueprint for success.
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Since he walked out on Sabrina, 57, and her siblings, she has seen her father just a handful of times.
She alleges he also snubbed the family during the worst times in her life – including when her mother was battling cancer in 1998 and couldn’t afford vital medical care before she died.
“My sister Reneeka was a baby eight weeks old when my dad left,” she said.
“How do you leave a baby? I was eight years old, and he left under the pretence ‘I’m gonna get you a bike?’ I can laugh about it now.
“I don’t think it should have taken up the whole movie, but, to give the movie some more credibility, at least reference it, as he left us when he was a grown man. Does anyone believe this story? Wow, really, it’s all there on Google.
“I get it, every movie is slightly economical with the truth, but because it’s Venus and Serena, nobody is going to put anything bad about them, or make it seem like they were part of something bad.
“Truth be told, those girls rose to the top while his other children had to suffer because of the choices my dad made, we were raised in poverty after he left.”
As previously revealed by The Sun, Richard Williams is now being looked after by another son – Chavoita LeSane – who has a lengthy rap sheet, as the former coach is “incapacitated” and barely able to talk after two strokes.
Sabrina went on to slam her estranged father saying that she would never attend his funeral.
“I don’t think I’ll see him alive. I’ve even buried my dad in my head because I know I won’t be able to attend his funeral.
“That’s just not going to be an option, they’re not going to let me, they won’t even tell me. I’ll find out from the media reports or a friend.
“I can chase my dad around for the rest of my life in my head, or I can come to terms that I believe my dad loves me in his own way. That’s all I can do.”Her half-sister Sabrina Williams has slammed the film, calling it ‘a comedy’[/caption] Will Smith is being tipped for an Academy Award for his role in the movie[/caption]
Sabrina blasted the upcoming biopic about her dad, “King Richard” – starring Will Smith – saying it completely omitted her their dad’s first family, whom he cruelly abandoned.
Sabrina laughs out loud that his first thirty years have been ignored by King Richard director Reinaldo Marcus Green, who hasn’t cast a single family member from her dad’s first marriage, according to movie directory IMDb.com.
“It’s a comedy, no?” she scoffed when speaking to The Sun. “How can you make a movie by telling half the story?
“It suddenly starts with dad and his new wife Oracene and their children. It’s like nothing happened before.
“I think the title is completely over the top. He thinks he’s the king of the world, but no one that’s ever been around him thinks he’s King Richard. It is an outrageous title, but to truth be told, it fits him.
“He’s not the king of the world. If you look at him psychologically, it’s something he’s never achieved apart from in his head, he’s lived only through two of his daughters forsaking all his other children.
“I just need to see it now because I didn’t realize how hysterically funny it would be. One of the things I’m gonna have to do is not laugh out loud in the auditorium as I know the full story.”
‘FAMILY HAD TO SUFFER’
The Sun has reached out to Smith’s production team and Richard Williams’ son, who has power of attorney, for comment.
“They say Will Smith is probably getting an Academy Award for this, I held him in a deep regard, but, as a black American, he should have wanted to tell the full story.
“Will Smith is not dumb. They got to grow up better and didn’t have to harvest for food or worry about their next meal. It would have been nice to have a backstory.”
Sabrina, who will soon become a fully qualified chaplain and lives in Las Vegas, said the actor should be “ashamed of himself,” but she doesn’t feel any anger towards her dad, only pity.
She says: “If my mom was still alive, she’d laugh: ‘That rat b******’ – she had a great sense of humour.
“She stopped giving a damn about my dad a long time before she died.
“I had two childhoods. The first was OK because we had money, but the second period was very difficult. It was like an instant change. If it wasn’t for the churches that we belonged to, I don’t think my mom would have made it.
“You can have an outside persona, we all have something that we project, but my dad has been projecting one all his life, living through the girls.
“I think it’s just sad because there’s no way that my dad doesn’t think about me, or my other brothers and sisters. There’s just no way in your life that you can put that to the side and not think about it.
CHANCE MEET WITH SIBLINGS
“Because I’ve had people, especially in the hospice where I work, regret things. He hasn’t forgotten us, he’s just put us in a compartment. You know that part of your world exists, but you just don’t want to deal with it – and that’s a sad thing.
“He choose tennis for them, as he knew it could also make him a millionaire.
“I feel sympathy for him like, dude, you need to come to terms with this.”
She’s met her tennis playing half-siblings only once, by chance, at Knott’s Berry Farm, a theme park in California, when the pair were teenagers.
Most of the barbs against her father are punctuated with laughter and self-reflection, as Sabrina feels she’s finally found contentment after spending her younger years with unresolved anger issues.
“How many times are we going to blame our parents for everything?” she said.
“My dad is not a good dad, he was never a good dad and that’s the truth. But, at some point, you have to take responsibility. That’s why I went to counselling – I’m a better person because I realize I can’t just blame my dad.”
On whether she will meet her half-sisters again, Sabrina said: “I don’t think I will ever meet Serena or Venus another time.
“I’d love to be able to meet my niece [Serena’s daughter Olympia, four] because she’s so cute and adorable, I love kids.”
Now, Sabrina is in her element working in the hospice, and would ultimately like to work as a children’s hospital chaplain in one of the Bible belt states.Sabrina now lives in Las Vegas and has only met her half-siblings by chance once in California[/caption] Richard had a manifesto for turning his girls into tennis superstars[/caption] Sabrina has not seen her estranged father in years and claims he abandoned their family[/caption]