Serena Williams Withdraws From 2018 Australian Open: “I’m Not Where I Personally Want To Be”

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Last weekend, Serena Williams competed in an exhibition tennis match in Abu Dhabi. The 23-time Grand Slam winner was not able to beat Jelena Ostapenko, which caused speculation that she may not be ready just yet for the upcoming 2018 Australian Open. After the loss, Williams herself admitted that she is looking forward to returning to the game full-time, but her recovery from having a baby four months ago is different from anything she’s ever experienced. SB Nation pulled up her comments after that game where the champion stated:

“I don’t think I am going to rate my performance. I have plenty of comebacks, from injuries, from surgeries, but I’ve never had a comeback after actually giving birth to a human being. So, in my eyes, I feel it was a wonderful, wonderful match for me.”

”I don’t know if I am totally ready to come back on the tour yet. I know that when I come back I definitely want to be competing for championships,” Williams said. “I am definitely looking forward to getting back out there. I am taking it one day at a time. I am going to assess everything with my team before deciding.”

And after careful consideration, Williams has pulled out of the upcoming Australian Open. In a Snapchat post yesterday, she said she is not personally where she wants to be and that she is “disappointed” in having to make this announcement. But she makes it clear that she does not just want to compete – she wants to win. She stated:

“After competing in Abu Dhabi I realized that although I am super close, I’m not where I personally want to be. 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. With that being said, and even though I am disappointed about it, I’ve decided not to compete in the Australian Open this year.”

The Australian Open might be a particular sore spot for Williams’ fans because it was at this Open last year that Serena won while two months pregnant with Alexis Olympia Ohanian. But don’t worry, the incomparable one looks forward to winning the Open again with her mini-me. In the same post, Williams said, “The memory of last year’s Open is one that I will carry with me, and Olympia and I look forward to coming back again. I appreciate the support and understanding of my fans and everyone at the Australian Open.”

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