gpolit.com
gpolit.com January 19, 2018


Serena Williams won't play this year's Australian Open

07 January 2018, 02:04 | Ken Black

Kei Nishikori's withdrawal was confirmed on Thursday amid uncertainty over Andy Murray Novak Djokovic and Rafael

Nishikori to miss Australian Open due to wrist injury

After giving birth to a baby girl last September and hosting a fairytale wedding in New Orleans in November, Serena Williams needs some time to adjust to her new life.

Ms Williams returned to the court on December 30 at the World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi, where she lost an exhibition match against Jelena Ostapenko 6-2 3-6 10-5.

Williams began last year's Australian Open one week after learning she was pregnant.

Since then, she has given birth to her first child and married Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian at a star-studded wedding, where guests included Beyonce and reality TV star Kim Kardashian.

Williams, a 23-time Grand Slam victor and the reigning Australian Open champion, said: "Although I am super close, I'm not where I want to be". "My coach and team always said, 'Only go to tournaments when you're prepared to go all the way.' With that being said I am disappointed to say I've decided not to compete in The Australian Open this year", she said (via People). She also stuck mostly to the baseline and only twice charged the net.

Williams' absence, while disappointing for fans and officials, raises the prospect of another first-time grand slam victor making their mark in Melbourne.

Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley expressed his admiration for her efforts to return to the game she loves.

The upcoming Australian Open women's draw won't include the defending champion.

Williams said she isn't ready for top level tennis just yet.

"It's never an easy decision to skip a Grand Slam, I guess for any professional, and for sure for Serena", Mouratoglou told ESPN. Williams can look to Margaret Court, Kim Clijsters, and Evonne Goolagong Cawley as those who achieved the feat as mothers. Those two months she could not practice after giving birth.

However, the organisers are quick to clarify that this only applies to players whose absence makes a dent of at least a million Australian dollars to the tournament.

On Thursday, men's world number 22 Kei Nishikori withdrew because of a wrist injury.



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