Sports

Serena Williams Drops Comeback Match, Found It 'Super Incredibly Hard'

Serena Williams Drops Comeback Match, Found It 'Super Incredibly Hard'”

Serena Williams was pleased to get back on court despite losing what was her first match in nearly a year, against Jelena Ostapenko, at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

Williams struggled with her serve and Ostapenko won 6-2, 3-6 and then 10-5 in a super tiebreaker, but the American still impressed to take a set off the No. 7-ranked Ostapenko after almost a year away from tennis.

Williams, a 23-time grand slam champion, has not played competitively since winning the Australian Open in January, taking time out from tennis to give birth to her first child.

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"I'm excited. It's good to be back on the court, this is such a good time for me", Williams, 36, told Eurosport.

Whenever the incredible story of Serena Williams' career is finished, a loss at the World Tennis Championship in 2017 won't be much of an interesting footnote. "I am definitely looking forward to getting back out there", Williams said. This will be the first time that women have taken part in the event and it is a huge honour to be part of that history after watching the tournament for many years. "I am going to assess everything with Patrick [Mouratoglou, her coach] and my team". Another break in the ninth game delivered her first set of the comeback.

"I am really honoured to play Serena in her first match after coming back and I think it is such a great opportunity for me".

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'I was a little anxious out there, I was looking at my camp and if Olympia (her daughter) was alright, ' she said afterwards.

Williams struggled with her movement at first but played some fine shots in a 6-2 3-6 (10-5) defeat.

She clinched the set when she showed off fine athleticism to reach a drop shot which caught the top of the net, but then fell short in the decisive match tie-break, too many errors allowing Ostapenko to clinch victory. "I knew I was not going to fall over and break", she said.

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Meanwhile, Ostapenko sounded delighted in her official statement, mentioning, "I am thrilled to be playing in Abu Dhabi at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship".



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