Serena Williams Drops out of Australian Open

Serena Williams is shown with the Australian Open tennis championships women’s singles trophy in this Jan. 28 2017 file

FOLLOWING HER return to the tennis court with an exhibition match in Abu Dhabi, Serena Williams has confirmed that she will withdraw from the Australian Open tournament, which will take place Melbourne. "It was never going to be good enough for her to just compete".

"After the two events, a decision will be made about his participation at the first Grand Slam of the season, the Australian Open, where Novak has been crowned champion six times".

"After competing in Abu Dhabi I realised that although I am super close, I'm not where I personally want to be", Williams added.

The 36-year-old was eight weeks pregnant last year when she triumphed for a seventh time at Melbourne Park to claim an Open-era record 23rd Grand Slam title. She gave birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia, in September.

He was upset in Round Two of the Australian Open by Uzbekistani Denis Istomin, ranked 117th in the world at the time, and also lost in the Quarter Finals of the French Open to Dominic Thiem.

Venus has returned and is playing in Sydney next week to prepare for the Australian Open, which begins January 15.

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Williams is the latest big name to withdraw from the year's opening Grand Slam, which will be played from January 15 to January 28.

Other star players, including top-ranked Rafael Nadal, six-time champion Novak Djokovic and 2014 victor Stan Wawrinka, also are dealing with injuries.

Serena will sit one out, but is promising to return in future.

"I appreciate the support and understanding of my fans and everyone at the Australian Open".

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

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