Serena Williams returns after a year away from tennis as the American legend played alongside Ounce Jabber in the Eastbourne International Doubles on Tuesday. Williams, the 23-time Grand Slam singles champion, returned to action for the first time since leaving Wimbledon crying last year. Alexandra Sasnovich, 40, suffered a leg injury during the first round of Wimbledon and has not been seen on court since.
Williams and Tunisia’s Jabbar, ranked third in the WTA singles rankings, faced off against Sarah Soribs Tormo of Spain and Marie Bozkova of the Czech Republic.
After such a distance, Serena applauded during the overwhelming reception of the crowd as she walked to the court in the evening sun.
Rumors of his retirement had been circulating for months before Williams announced his impending return last week.
But, with Wimbledon kicking off on June 27, Williams finally resumed his career, playing with Jabber in the Wimbledon warm-up event on the Sussex beach.
Jabber, who won the Berlin WTA singles title over the weekend, admitted on Monday that he did not need a “second” to consider teaming up with the United States.
“It’s such an inspiration and the fact that we’re playing doubles together is big news for me and it’s incredible,” he said.
Serena has been given a wild card to play in singles at Wimbledon as she resumes bidding for her history.
Williams Majors is one Grand Slam crown away from matching the Australian Margaret Court record of 24 singles titles.
The last of Williams’ 23 Grand Slam singles titles came at the 2017 Australian Open.
Since then, she has lost four Grand Slam finals, including Wimbledon in 2018 and 2019.
Williams won the seventh and most recent of his seven Wimbledon singles titles in 2016.
Serena, who became a mother in 2017, is ranked 1,204th in the WTA rankings due to her out of term.
Longtime coach Patrick Muratoglu revealed in April that he had a new role to play with Simona Halep.
Wimbledon is widely regarded as the best chance for Williams to win another Grand Slam.
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