Welcome Back! Nike Celebrates Serena Williams' Return With A Special-Edition Blazer

27 May, 2018, 15:28 | Author: Anita Tucker
  • Serena Williams competes at the Miami Open in March

Serena Williams' return to Grand Slam tennis from maternity leave just got even tougher, with French Open organisers announcing they will not give the 23-time major singles victor a seeding.

Paris: Alexander Zverev has emerged as the main threat to Rafael Nadal's French Open crown in recent weeks as he bids to end Germany's 81-year wait for a men's singles title at Roland Garros.

Williams, a three-time French Open champion, is expected to play in her first major since returning from maternity leave.

However, the former world number one slumped to early defeats in Indian Wells and Miami Open before she recently pulled out of Madrid Open and Rome Masters-something which saw her world ranking tumble to number 453.

Williams will enter the tournament unseeded after the French Tennis Federation (FTF) confirmed that this year's ranking and list of the women's seeds will once again be based on the WTA ranking. If Williams enters unseeded, she could end up facing some of the top ranked players in the early rounds which makes it a lot more hard for her to advance and book herself a place in the quarter or semi-finals.

At 36, Williams is chasing the record of 24 grand slam title wins, held by Australia's Margaret Court, and if she lines up at Roland Garros, she will be fitter, fresh and unsafe.

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Women's Final. d. Seles, a lefty who hit two-fisted forehands and backhands, won the 1990, 1991 and 1992 French Open titles. It's normal to have protected ranking.

"Right now, the next few days, I won't even think about tennis".

"I would like to see that change", Sharapova said at last week's Italian Open.

She gave birth to daughter Alexis last September.

The owner of 23 major singles titles, a record for the 50-year Open era, Williams hasn't played on one of her sport's most prestigious stages since winning the Australian Open in January 2017, while pregnant.

Halep added: "So the people will decide what seed she will get".

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"It's not as if she left because of injury and lost her passion for the game", Blake said.

The WTA told AP that it would review the current rule that allows players returning from injury or maternity leave entry into tournaments, but does not protect rankings for seeding.

"She was number one so she deserves seeding."

Williams may not be getting treated like a top player by tournament organizers, but as she wryly noted Monday on Twitter, other tennis-related officials still seem to be recognizing her elite status.

The French Open draw will be made Thursday, with the tournament starting on Sunday. Williams tweeted that, for the second time in a week, she was being asked to produce a sample for an anti-doping test.

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