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    • #5899
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      While age may have been a mere number at this year’s Australian Open, the numeral 23 turned out to be very special. That’s the record number of Grand Slam titles Serena Williams now has after beating sister Venus, 6-4, 6-4, in their Saturday morning match. It also happens to be a certain iconic number for Nike, the athletic wear company that sponsors Serena.

      And so maybe it’s no surprise that to commemorate her victory the company sent her two pairs of Jordans accompanied by a letter from brand’s namesake congratulating Williams on her feat.

      Williams received the gift, described as coming from “a very very special and a very accomplished fan,” on SportsCenter on Saturday, and looked generally surprised when she opened the box.

      “Winning is hard, it takes years of hard work, mental toughness, and a willingness to accept the fact that you hate to lose,” the letter from Michael Jordan, who wore No. 23 throughout his storied career. “Congratulations, with much respect on winning No. 23. It will be a privilege to keep watching your determination on the court.”

      Williams received two pairs of shoes in the customized box that was lined in pink, Williams’s favorite color. She received a new red and black pair of NikeCourt Flare AJ1 sneakers that Serena put on after winning her title on Saturday, as well as a pair of pink and black AJ1 kicks.

      This new version isn’t yet available to the public, but will be soon, according to SoleCollector.com. The sneakers, which features …. are slated to hit the market on Monday and retail for $200.

      “These are my shoes in my favorite colors,” Williams said. “Thank you, Michael. Thank you, Michael Jordan. I can’t believe I’m saying thank you to Michael Jordan.”

      As for the fate of her shoes if, or maybe when, she wins Grand Slam No. 24?

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