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Serena Williams wears one-legged catsuit in a nod to Olympic legend Flo-Jo

The tennis icon channeled another legendary athlete, track star Florence Griffith-Joyner, with her outfit at the Australian Open.
Serena Williams
On Monday, Serena Williams beat Germany's Laura Siegemund in a match in Melbourne. Cameron Spencer / Getty Images
/ Source: TODAY

Serena Williams is a fashion trailblazer in her own right, but the tennis star took inspiration from another legendary athlete for her latest look.

On Monday, the 39-year-old took part in her first round match in the Australian Open, and she turned heads in a multicolored, one-legged catsuit.

The unexpected ensemble featured asymmetrical black, pink and red color blocking and was cut off at the upper thigh on one side. Williams accessorized the unique piece with a blue headband and white sneakers with hot pink trim.

Serena Williams during day one of the Australian Open in Melbourne on Monday.Cameron Spencer / Getty Images

During a post-match press conference, the tennis pro broke down the meaning behind the eye-catching outfit, which was designed by Nike.

“I was inspired by Flo-Jo, who was a wonderful track athlete, amazing athlete when I was growing up,” she said. “Well, watching her fashion just always changing, her outfits were always amazing. This year we thought of 'What can we do to keep elevating the Serena Williams on the court?' The Nike team actually thought of this design of inspiration from Flo-Jo. I was like, oh my God, this is so brilliant."

Florence Griffith-Joyner, left, and Williams. The track star famously wore a series of one-legged track suits. Getty Images

Williams was referring to Olympic gold medalist Florence Griffith-Joyner, who famously sported a series of one-legged catsuits at the 1988 Olympics. At the time, the track star told NBC that the unique design wasn't actually intentional.

“The one-legger was by accident,” she said, according to NBC Sports. “It was a two-legger, originally. I was in the mirror, and I cut off one leg, and I liked how it looked. So I took a pair of my briefs, and I put it over the top of the one leg. And I said, well that looks good, I’ll try that.”

Florence Griffith Joyner competes at the 1988 U.S. Track and Field Olympic Trials in Indianapolis, Indiana.Focus On Sport / Getty Images

Williams explained that her design team made a few tweaks to Griffith-Joyner's original design and her fans on Instagram seemed to dig the look.

"BEST OUTFIT EVER!!!!" one follower wrote. Another commented: "That may be your best ensemble ever."

During the press conference, one reporter asked Williams what she thought about Super Bowl champion Tom Brady asking his family to leave him for a few days so he could prepare for the game. The tennis pro and her husband Alexis Ohanian have a 3-year-old daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., and she said she'd find it difficult to be away from her little girl for too long.

"Everyone's different. I can totally understand why we would banish (his family) because if I had the strength to do it, I would too because I could see it's definitely a distraction," she said.