Just days after her triumphant third-round win against Julia Görges on Saturday, Serena Williams announced on Monday that she’s dropping out of the French Open due to an injury. In the press conference, she elaborated on her injury (which is to her arm), and why that’s forcing her to stop competing at Roland-Garros.
Serena Williams withdraws: "I unfortunately have been having some issues with my pec muscle and unfortunately it's been getting worse to the point where right now I can't actually serve. It's kind of hard to play when I can't physically serve" (referring to pectoral muscle)
— Christopher Clarey (@christophclarey) June 4, 2018
This marks the first time Williams has ever pulled out of a Grand Slam tournament. On Monday, she was scheduled to face Maria Sharapova in what some have been trying to bill as a “grudge match.” Sharapova has only two career wins against Williams, and Williams has emerged the victor in every match they’ve contested since 2004.
The French Open is Serena’s first major since she gave birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia, nine months ago. She experienced severe complications during the birth, which required multiple surgeries and bed rest.
In her first French Open match on Tuesday, Serena donned a catsuit of empowerment and beat Kristyna Pliskova in two sets. A few days later, Serena faced Ashleigh Barty, the No. 17 ranked tennis player in the world, and roared back to beat her after losing the first set. After her win against Georges on Saturday, she and her sister, Venus, took the court on Sunday to compete in doubles. The sisters were defeated in three sets by No. 3 seeds Andreja Klepac and Maria Jose Martinez.
The next Grand Slam tournament is Wimbledon, which starts on July 2. That gives Williams a month to recover from her pectoral injury and get ready to take the court again. She told the press during the news conference that she’s planning to get a scan of her arm, and she won’t know if she’ll be able to compete until she gets the results.
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