Serena Williams loses to Ajla Tomljanovic in U.S. Open farewell

Serena Williams is not one to go quietly, which is why she didn't want this match, this trip to the U.S. The U.S. Open farewell doesn't have to be the last match of her remarkable career.

In the end, the 23-time Grand Slam champion was unable to hold off five match points, and was eliminated from the U.S. Open.

This month, she turns 41 and recently announced that she is ready to start "evolving" away from her playing days.

"It's been the most incredible ride and journey I've ever been on in my life," Williams said, tears streaming down her cheeks shortly after one final shot landed in the net.

It was not perfect, but her racket performance on Friday showed grit and some terrific serving.

During the second set, Williams' feet got tangled and she fell to the court, dropping her racket.

She would win her first major trophy 12 months later at the U.S. Open. Now she was saying goodbye to that same stadium

"It's been a long time. I've been playing tennis my whole life," Williams said Friday night, after performing one last twirl-and-wave move usually reserved for victories.

"It is a little soon, but I'm also happy because, I mean, this is what I wanted, what I want."