Serena Williams set to play at Wimbledon and end year-long injury absence from tennis

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 (PA)
(PA)

Serena Williams will play at this year’s Wimbledon after nearly a year out of the game after being given a wildcard into the women’s singles draw.

The 40-year-old picked up a leg injury in the first round of the 2021 tournament. And rumours circulated that she might retire from the game after her coach Patrick Mouratoglou started working with Simona Halep.

But the seven-time Wimbledon champion hinted she would make her season debut when the tournament gets under way on June 27 in a social media post before being announced in the initial list of wildcards for SW19 on Tuesday.

Writing on Instagram, she posted a picture of her Nike trainer-clad feet on a grass court with the words: “SW and SW19. It’s a date. 2022 See you there. Let’s go #renasarmy.”

She received a Wimbledon wildcard alongside the female British quintet of Katie Boulter, Jodie Burrage, Sonay Kartal, Yuriko Miyazaki and Katie Swan.

She will play in the doubles at Eastbourne in the preceding week with Ons Jabeur. In a statement, Williams said: “I am excited to return to the Rothesay International Eastbourne in England and to be back on the grass - a surface that has been so good to me throughout my career. Eastbourne has a unique charm that you don’t see anywhere else on Tour and I’m looking forward to playing in front of the fans again.”

Williams is still on the lookout for a record 24th Grand Slam singles title and twice reached the final since returning from the birth of her daughter – in 2018 and 2019 – only to lose out on both occasions.

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