10/05/2016 2:33 AM AEST | Updated 10/05/2016 2:37 AM AEST

Beyoncé Wanted Serena In 'Lemonade' Because She Personifies Strength

@beyonce 🍋🍋🍋🍋

A photo posted by Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) on

Not much was known about Beyoncé’s latest video album, “Lemonade,” before it dropped two weeks ago. But even amidst a series of surprises -- truths about her husband and her heartbreak -- it was hardly shocking that when casting for a track that testifies to the power and resolve of women everywhere, Beyoncé selected Serena Williams to dance beside her.

In her nearly two decades in the spotlight, Williams has been criticized time and time again for seemingly everything under the sun. Either she’s too much of something (too muscular, too different, too honest), or notenough the other thing (not censored enough, not feminine enough, not cookie-cutter enough).

Hence Beyoncé’s decision to deign Williams with the honor of a cameo in "Sorry."

According to Williams, her inclusion in the video stemmed from both her character and her familiarity with the team behind “Lemonade.”

I have known the director since I was like 9 years old,” she explained to reporters at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. “I know Beyoncé pretty well, so they were like, ‘We would love for you to be in this particular song. It’s about strength and it’s about courage and that’s what we see you as.'"

Describing the track as “strong” and “fun,” Williams relayed the tips Beyoncé gave when the cameras began to roll.

"She told me that she just wants me to dance, like just be really free and just dance like nobody's looking and go all out. So that wasn't easy in the beginning, but then it got easier.”

More of this Queen Bey-Queen Serena pairing, please.