Serena Williams returned to tennis after a year away with a doubles win with Ons Jabeur



CNN

Serena Williams marked her return to tennis after a year’s absence with a win with Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur in the women’s doubles at the Eastbourne International.

The pair defeated Marie Bouzkova and Sara Sorribes Tormo 2-6, 6-3, 13-11 in the grass court warmup event, as Williams made her first appearance on the tennis court since retiring with a leg injury in the first round of the Wimbledon last year.

Following the win, the 23-time grand slam winner admitted there were times during his 12-month layoff that he feared he might never return.

“Absolutely, absolutely,” he told the BBC when asked if he worried his career was over. “I would be dishonest if I said no, but now my body feels good.

“It’s doubles, I’m only playing half of the court, but I’ve been doing a lot of training so it definitely feels good. You know what, I’m literally taking it one day at a time,” Williams added. “I really took my time with my hamstring injury, so I’m not making a ton of decisions after that.

READ: ‘I should have 30 or 32’ grand slam singles titles, says Serena Williams

“It’s so beautiful there and it’s so much fun to play with Ons, we have a lot of fun. Our opponents played fantastically and we are happy to stay there.

Last week, Wimbledon organizers announced that Williams had been given a wildcard to compete in the singles draw at the All England Club.

Williams is chasing Margaret Court’s record of 24 grand slam singles titles, including her last grand slam win at the 2017 Australian Open.

The 40-year-old last reached the Wimbledon final in 2019, where she lost to Simona Halep, and told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in March that she “should be at 30 or 32” grand slam singles titles.

“I should have (the record), really, I have had many opportunities. But I’m not giving up.”