Venus Williams Goes Au Naturale (As In Naked!) For ESPN ‘Body’ Issue

venus williams - nude

*There she is, Miss Amer…Oh wait! Wrong Williams.

The Williams posing nude this time, intentionally, is Venus. And she wants you to see all 6’1″ of her in her spread for ESPN Magazine’s sixth annual Body Issue, set to hit newsstands on July 11.

But it sounds like, in a moment of “Ok, ok, I’ll do it!” Venus may have signed on the dotted line before reading the fine print. But she was a good sport about it anyway.

You think the check had anything to do with it?

“It didn’t dawn on me until right when I walked on set that I would have to be without clothes. If I would have thought about it before, there may have been a little less of a chance,” she said in an interview with ESPN.

According to the New York Daily News, Venus won’t be alone. Posing alongside the 34-year-old tennis powerhouse will be a nude Tomas Berdych – with tan lines for underwear.  Berdych is a 2010 Wimbledon finalist.

Tomas Berdych and Venus Williams pose for The ESPN "Body Issue"
Tomas Berdych and Venus Williams pose for The ESPN “Body Issue”

You may recall Williams was diagnosed with Sjögren’s syndrome, an autoimmune disorder that sidelined her from tennis for six months in 2011-2012. She will be discussing the not-yet-reported details of her battle with the disease.

Williams explains to ESPN, “The whole quality of my life was compromised. You are so tired it hurts. You have to accept that you’re never going to be 100 percent.”

She says that the disorder has caused her to be vigilant about training too hard, “It’s a balance between pushing myself as much as I can, and being reasonable about what I can achieve and my body will tolerate,” according to the New York Daily News.

Despite these health issues, Williams is currently playing at Wimbledon. She is only one of four women who have won five Wimbledon singles titles, the New York Daily News reports. She has also won nine Grand Slam tournaments.

Williams’ turn to grace the pages of the magazine comes five years after her sister, Serena, appeared on the cover.

Read more at ESPN and the New York Daily News.

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