When Ayan Broomfield was offered a stint on King Richard as a body double for Saniyya Sidney, who portrayed Venus Williams on screen, she immediately accepted. This felt like a full circle moment for Broomfield, who spent a portion of her life competing as an NCAA athlete and looking up to the Williams sisters.

Broomfield’s competitive spirit pushed her to pursue tennis like her older sister. Their father, a track-and-field athlete, helped them train and perfect their technique. 

“We looked up to the Williams sisters; we kind of tried to use their playbook,” she told Blavity. “My dad taught us for a while, and we were lucky enough to be able to pick up the sport and become decently good.”

The Toronto native eventually joined UCLA, where she became an NCAA doubles champion, was named ACC Freshman of the Year and was a six-time member of the UCLA Athletic Director’s Honor Roll.

Venus is said to have requested Broomfield to take on her role in King Richard. In a turn of events that the 26-year-old qualifies as an “honor” and an “amazing opportunity,” she trained to copy the tennis star’s unique playing style.

“I really wanted to do it justice because this is a story about a family of trailblazers that opened the door for so many people in the sport of tennis,” Broomfield said. “I wanted to make sure I paid homage to Venus herself.”

She was given another opportunity in entertainment. This time, her relationship with tennis player Frances Tiafoe was put into the spotlight. They starred on Netflix’s Break Point, which offered fans a look behind the scenes of the tennis world. Broomfield had to get used to her life being recorded in an experience she said was odd yet fun.

“It’s really important that people get to see the behind the scenes so that they can understand who the athletes are off court, who their teams are, who their significant others are off court,” she said.

She also saw the importance of fans getting to know Tiafoe’s personal story.

“It’s less about us and more about who we can inspire,” Broomfield said, highlighting the importance of representation in a traditionally white country club sport.

She points to figures such as Savannah James and Ayesha Curry as positive examples of Black women using their influence for philanthropic efforts. Broomfield wants to show that tennis can also be a means of giving back to the community.

It is what prompted her to launch her foundation last January. Her goal is to help elevate organizations not currently benefiting from the necessary exposure, resources and funding to thrive in their grassroots efforts. 

“I didn’t come from money, but I was able to play the sport of tennis, and it’s provided me with so much,” Broomfield said. So, I wanted to make sure at some point in my career, I was able to give back.”

The 26-year-old said she benefited from scholarship programs to play tennis in the United States. She pursued her passion in an environment where she sometimes felt like the odd one out.

“The one thing that you kind of had to focus on was your tennis game because that was the one equalizer,” she said. “That’s what is so amazing about sports.”

Broomfield knows the power of social media. She decided to grow her platform through lifestyle, beauty and fashion content — fields she has a particular affinity for — in order to help her foundation gain traction.

“If you want to work with me, you have to find a way to support my foundation because that’s just what I’m using this content creation thing for,” she said of her brand deals.

Broomfield hopes to contribute to the much needed representation of people of color in tennis through social media.

“I want to make sure that when you think of the tennis aesthetic or you think of tenniscore, you’re not just thinking about, you know, a ‘white country club tennis player’,” she sai. “I go to events and I go to tournaments, and I don’t see enough of us there. I would love to see more of us out there.”