Former World No. 1 and 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams returned to competitive tennis during the Grass season as she made her season debut at the 2022 Wimbledon Championships in the singles discipline having earlier played in the Doubles event in Eastbourne partnering Ons Jabeur, who has made her way to the finals of Wimbledon.
Serena’s return was however short-lived as the American lost in the first round to Harmony Tan in 3-sets after a close battle on the Center Court. The exit marked Serena’s second first-round exit from the Championships in her 21st appearance at the Grand Slam where she made her debut in 1998 and is a 7-time singles, 6-time doubles and 1-time mixed doubles champion, taking her total tally to a 14-time champion in Wimbledon across disciplines.
Serena Williams was a notable absentee
With the All-England Club celebrating 100 years since its relocation to its current location, a big celebration was held on 3rd July with many of the former champions returning to the historic Center Court including the surprise visit of Roger Federer. Serena however remained absent from it and it was a big shock to the fans as she is one of the most decorated tennis champions. While a few theories did come up then, the real reason seems to be finally out.
“She wanted to use the cars for the whole two weeks because that’s what happens at the other grand slams. She was told that was not possible because they had to be used by the other players. She was not happy. Maybe that’s why she refused to take part in the centenary parade,” said a Wimbledon source as per Tennisuptodate.
The rule sees all players get one car each during their stay at the Championships with an additional vehicle for some particular former champions who are participating. Serena however requested 5 cars, one each for herself, her husband Alexis Ohanian, her mother Oracene Price, her sister Venus Williams and her coach. As she made a first-round exit, the request for vehicles for the entire fortnight that too for 5 cars was refused and it is believed to be the reason the American skipped the celebration.
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