I read on The NY Times this headline:

"Serena Williams rose to the occasion of her farewell run with a fitting win in the first round, our columnist writes."

I can't interpret "farewell run" would that be the event of the farewell happening?

  • It means farewell appearance. Headlines prize brevity over precision of word choice. Sports writers barely know real English. Commented Aug 30, 2022 at 15:18

2 Answers 2


Most tennis tournaments are "knockout" tournaments. The loser of a match is knocked out of the tournament and the winner continues on to the next round, until only one player is left - the winner.

A "run" is a sequence of winning matches. If you have a good run in a tournament it means you won several consecutive matches. This is Serena's final entry to the US Open and she has now begun her run, winning the first match. It is her "farewell" run because this is the last time she will enter this tournament.

This is sense 12.2 in wiktionary


The verb "run" (past tense "ran") most often is used to mean traveling by foot at a rapid pace. Like, "He ran from the house to his car to avoid getting wet in the rain."

As a noun, "run" can mean an event involving running, like a foot race or an occasion when one needs to move rapidly. Like, "He made a run for the border to escape the police."

But "run" can also mean, more generally, a period of activity. Perhaps literal athletics, or more generally any activity. Like, "In his run as president of the company, Mr Jones increased sales by 30%."

That appears to be the meaning here. By Miss Williams "farewell run" the writer means the final time period of her tennis career.

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