Barbie honors 9 sports icons, including Venus Williams, Mary Fowler

Mattel, the iconic toy company founded nearly 80 years ago, is continuing its success streak following the blockbuster “Barbie” movie released last year. In a news release Wednesday, the company announced a new collection of dolls honoring nine legendary female athletes from around the world.

This latest project is part of Barbie’s 65th anniversary celebrations and is timed ahead of the Paris Olympics. It pays tribute to the trailblazing spirit of these sports icons, with tennis superstar Venus Williams leading the lineup.

“I’m honored to be recognized as a sports role model and join forces with Team Barbie to continue empowering the next generation of young girls to never stop believing in their dreams,” Williams, a seven-time Grand Slam singles champion, said in the release.

Williams’ doll is equipped with a racket and is dressed in a white tennis outfit, complete with a white visor and her signature hoop earrings.

Joining Williams in this elite squad of sports icons are soccer sensation Christine Sinclair (Canada), football phenom Mary Fowler (Australia), Olympic boxing queen Estelle Mossely (France), gymnastics trailblazers Alexa Moreno (Mexico) and Rebeca Andrade (Brazil), paratriathlon powerhouse Susana Rodriguez (Spain), swimming legend Federica Pellegrini (Italy), and sprint sensation Ewa Swoboda (Poland).

Each athlete has overcome significant barriers and inspired countless girls to dream big and embrace their limitless potential, according to the release. By celebrating these extraordinary women, Mattel said it hopes to reinforce the belief that every young girl deserves the opportunity to pursue her passions and turn her dreams into reality.

The new athletic Barbies will join Mattel’s lineup of role model dolls, a diverse collection representing groundbreaking women from various fields and backgrounds.

“Barbie is thrilled to continue the brand’s 65th anniversary celebration by recognizing the impact of sports in fostering self-confidence, ambition, and empowerment among the next generation,” Krista Berger, senior vice president of Barbie, said in a statement.