Serena Williams promises curtsy Queen will never forget

LONDON Tue Jun 22, 2010 12:08pm EDT

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LONDON (Reuters) - Serena Williams has promised Queen Elizabeth a curtsy "she'll definitely never forget" but the Wimbledon champion will not be tempted into wearing an outrageous outfit.

On Thursday, the Queen is making her first visit to the Wimbledon tennis in 33 years. The last time, she saw Virginia Wade win the women's singles for Britain.

Serena sailed through the first round on Tuesday, dispatching Portuguese teenager Michelle Larcher de Brito 6-0 6-4 in just over an hour. That gives her plenty of time to practice her curtsy in case she plays next before the Queen.

"I was going to curtsy today on the court afterwards but I think I flubbed it. So I am definitely going to work on it a little bit more. I'm trying to tone down my wrist action," she told reporters amid much laughter.

"My curtsy is really fun. It's something that she'll never forget," she promised.

For Tuesday's appearance on a sun-baked Center Court, Serena went for the "strawberries and cream" look with red underwear and a cream tennis dress.

Strawberries and cream are one of the great traditions for Wimbledon fans, even if they moan about the prices rising astronomically every year.

As for Thursday's tennis outfit, Serena pledged: "I'm definitely going to go for something more conservative."

She has a day off on Wednesday to perfect her curtsy, and to watch the United States playing Algeria in the World Cup.

So how does she feel about watching her countrymen?

"Let me tell you I'm jumping, I'm screaming, I'm punching the air. I mean I am really into it," she said.

Watching soccer even helps her tennis.

The Wimbledon crowd kept cheering Larcher de Brito as she battled in vain. Serena understood why.

"I would have gotten behind her as well especially now that I am watching a lot of the football. I really got behind North Korea. My heart really went out to them, especially against Brazil," she said.

"I was glad to watch the soccer because it helps my tennis game, to realize maybe they are just rooting for the underdog."

(Editing by Clare Fallon)

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