As Serena Williams returns, sister Venus says her game hasn't left


The elder Williams sister has not played an official singles match in 15 months since winning last year's Australian Open, but her coach Patrick Mouratoglou has said the 23-time grand slam victor expects to be in tip-top condition for the year's second slam come May.

The last time Williams set foot on the court for a competitive tour match was January 2017, where she completed a successful Australian Open campaign in Melbourne to net her 23rd Grand Slam title.

Former world number one Williams, who returned in 2012 from surgery for a life-threatening blood clot on her lung and climbed back to the top of the rankings, said she nearly died after giving birth to her daughter in September.

"Serena's target (for this year) will be to win grand slams", Mouratoglou said in an interview with But this year, three of the WTA's biggest names-Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka-are all unseeded.

"But I keep going and I know that I might not be at my best yet but I'm getting there". The statement went on to say that the Oscars was a flawless time to launch the spot as the messages resonate so well in Hollywood. "I really think that is the best first round".

Another one worth revisiting is 2015's "Inner Thoughts", offering up a glimpse at the inner thoughts of some women as they run, lift and stretch toward their fitness goals, and relating to the everyday grind a fitness routine can be, rather than glorifying pro athlete superheroes.

"Maybe in Indian Wells there will be some cobwebs, but I expect her to win in Miami", Navratilova told Omnisport, speaking courtesy of the Laureus World Sports Awards. "There have been so many days, even still, when I'm like, 'how am I going to keep going?'"

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However, the 33-year-old said her timetable would depend on how her body holds up to training.

Serena won her first match but lost in the semifinals. [But] I think we can say without doubt that this is her biggest challenge.

"She took the decision to come back to tennis".

Desert Smash is the kick off to Indian Wells, which will be broadcast on Tennis Channel over the next two weeks.

"I do feel she is the same person once she steps on a tennis court".

First on the agenda for Federer before the BNP Paribas Open - where he will have to reach the last four in order to retain his number one ranking - was his charitable foundation's fifth Match for Africa event in support of children's education in the region, which saw him preserve his unbeaten record over Jack Sock with a 7-6 (11-9), 6-4 exhibition win in front of a crowd of more than 15,000 at SAP Center in San Jose, California. "I can see during practices the same determination, the same level of expectation", he said.

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