Serena Williams, 40, returns to singles at Wimbledon

Serena Williams
Mal Taam/MALTphoto

Serena Williams will return next week, but the 23-time Grand Slam champion has not played in a year.

She gave birth to her daughter in 2017 and wanted to be around all the time, just like other people. Obviously, there are also other people who do not really care, so they can continue to work away from their kids a lot. 

During 2021 Wimbledon, Serena had to retire with her leg a leg injury in the first round. She has rarely done that, so it was a shook. But, why push it? Now Williams has to be 100 percent to compete with the best on tour.

Serena has always been very thoughtful, but it took her years to trust people, on court, and off court, too. She quickly became one of the best players when she was only a teenager. And then after that, she became a dominate player, with her amazing first serve, locked-in return, gigantic forehand and backhand. She would just crack the ball on any line. She started at the WTA in 1998, and next week, when she start in Eastbourne, she is 40 year old.

Williams will play with Ons Jabeur in the doubles at Eastbourne, but not singles. Serena has won 14 Grand Slams doubles titles, along with — of course — her older sister Venus.

Is Serena lurking? Does she really believe she can grab another singles title at Wimbledon, where she has won seven times? That would be very surpriseing. Five years ago, Serena still looked like that when she was on it, she can find the solution. But the other excellent people became smarter and driven, especially Iga Swiatek, the current No. 1, who hasn’t lost a match since early February.

In 2016, Serena won it at Wimbledon over Angie Kerber. In the 2018 final, the German got her. Once again, at 2019 Wimbledon, she was in the final, but the intense Simona Halep stoned her.

Is it possible that the aging Serena can be brilliant again? Roger Federer, who won 20 majors, but he also is 40 year sold, and he hasn’t won a Slam since 2018, at the Australian Open. And just like Serena, his body broke down and now he cannot play until next year.

We all know that Serena can play some incredible points. But not every point, just like she did when she won four Grand Slams in a row. That was amazing. Now, Serena will need to excel over the long haul. It takes seven pressure-packed victories to win a major. A rusty, but still masterful Serena will have great moments at Wimbledon. But raising the Venus Rosewater Dish will probably not be one of them.

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