The 23-time major victor, who had not played on clay since 2016 after taking time away to have a baby, likened her outfit to something from Marvel's Black Panther and said the new look made her "feel like a super hero". The cries of "Come on!" Pliskova saved a match point and generated a trio of break point chances as Serena struggled to land a first serve from deuce.
And, yes, the victory.
Something that was new, however: the title of working mother. "My priority is Olympia". No matter what, that's my priority.
Only later did Williams reveal that she was pregnant at the time.
Shortly after she tweeted that while she "adores and respects" him, he should "keep me out of your statements that are not factually based".
But Olympia was not present, leaving Serena to admit that the urge to get home to see her daughter was giving her a fresh perspective on a career which has spanned 3 decades. She suffered complications at the time of the birth due to a pulmonary embolism. "I'm just taking it a day at a time".
"I feel like a superhero when I wear it".
"But there was no beer pong", Williams added, in relation to reports that guests at the reception played a popular drinking game in which you throw ping pong balls towards other people's glasses, obliging them to gulp down any drink with a ball in it. "But it's a lot that goes into it with the pregnancy and with giving birth, and it's called a "miracle" for a reason".
The last time she had been spotted on a court was in a first-round loss to Naomi Osaka in Miami in March. Serena was coming into the clay court Slam with a 2-2 win/loss record, from two tournaments.
Williams built a 2-1 lead in the opening set on the strength of her serve.
Next up for Williams is a clash against Australian 17th seed Ashleigh Barty. "This is actually one of my favorite pieces", she says. Especially in the tiebreak for example, in the key moments she was able to lift her level, and this is really Serena.
Sharapova, the 28th seed, will face Croatia's Donna Vekic in the second round. Making her eighth main draw appearance at Roland Garros (and ninth appearance overall), after her maiden major quarter-final reached past year, Garcia salvaged a slim chance of ascending to World No.1 this fortnight: she would need to win the title with Wozniacki not reaching R16, Halep losing before the semis and Muguruza going out before the final.
All eyes were on Williams, though.
Ultimately, it was a typical comeback match for Williams, who looked understandably short on stamina and a little below par at times. She had almost as many unforced errors, 25, as winners, 29. She has simply redesigned it so that it fits in around her daughter's routine. She is smart, too, and she figured things out.
Nadal had to save four set points in the tiebreaker before wrapping up a victory.
All was not ideal, of course.
On Tuesday, at least, it appeared she'd successfully reached her goal. A spectator yelled: "That's all right, Serena!" Or you could look at it another way: Venus and Serena have 30 majors. "We designed it way before the movie, but still, it kind of reminds me of that".
"I missed Roland Garros so much, I missed the battle".
"So it will be a really good, another good show for me".
"I'm not putting any pressure on myself as I normally do".
"I know that the WTA are going through all the right processes. and I think there are valid arguments both ways".
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