The defending Australian Open tennis champion voluntarily leaves this year’s tournament citing a lack of physical readiness.
Almost exactly a year to date after winning the 2017 Australian Open, 23-time Grand Slam title winner and reigning Australian Open champion Serena Williams (pictured) is leaving this year’s major tennis competition.
According to various national media sources, the 36-year-old tennis legend withdrew from the 2018 Australian Open for personal reasons related to her physical well-being. In a social media post, which Williams made on Thursday (January 4), the record-breaking competitor explained the reasons for her exit from the Open.
“After performing in my first match after giving birth I realized that although I am super close, I’m not where I personally want to be,” Williams stated online. “My coach and team always said ‘Only go to tournaments when you are prepared to go all the way,’” she continued.