Serena Williams reveals reasons for Australian Open withdrawal
Reigning champion Serena Williams says she is ‘not ready’ to defend her Australian Open crown after pulling out of the tournament.
The 36-year-old had hoped to return to the court after the birth of her daughter Alexis Olympia late last year, and competed at the World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi in December, where she lost an exhibition match against Jelena Ostapenko 6-2 3-6 10-5.
However, Williams, who has won the season-opening Australian Open seven times, revealed on Friday morning that she’ll be sitting out this year’s event.
“After competing in Abu Dhabi I realised that although I am super close, I’m not where I personally want to be,” she said.
“My coach and team always said ‘only go to tournaments when you are prepared to go all the way’.
“I can compete – but I don’t want to just compete, I want to do far better than that and to do so, I will need a little more time.”
Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley appeared wholly understanding of Williams’ decision, adding: “I’ve been in constant contact with Serena and her team and know this is why she has pushed it and pushed it until the eleventh hour to make her final decision.
“We all wish her the very best and I look forward to seeing her back on court this year, and can’t wait to welcome her back to the Australian Open in 2019.”
Naomi Osaka will not play at Wimbledon but she is preparing to return to the game
Wimbledon is set to begin on June 28 and Naomi Osaka will be missing.
Andy Murray insists his ambition is not dented after compressive defeat at Queen’s Club
The Scot was overpowered 6-3 6-3.
Wimbledon organisers defend online ticket sale amid complaints from fans
Vast majority of those applying had no issues.
Impressive Matteo Berrettini ends Andy Murray’s Queen’s Club comeback
Andy Murray was overpowered by Matteo Berrettini.
‘I’m just pleased to have come through,’ Dan Evans after easing into Queen’s Club last eight
British No 1 secured a two-set win over the Frenchman.
‘The goal is to prolong my career,’ says Rafael Nadal as he withdraws from Wimbledon and Tokyo Olympics
Rafael Nadal opts to take an extended.
Rafael Nadal’s Wimbledon withdrawal may be a sign of what is to come
Kevin Palmer on Rafael Nadal’s Wimbledon withdrawal.
A list of Roger Federer’s defeats on grass. Can you name the 24 players who have beaten him on the surface?
A full list of Roger Federer’s 28 defeats on grass.
‘The tank is quite empty,’ says Kiki Bertens as she announces 2021 will be her final season
Kiki Bertens to call it a day.
‘This is not something I’m happy and proud about’ – Roger Federer gives his verdict after shock defeat
Roger Federer far from happy with his Halle display.