December 27, 2010

Serena may delay tour comeback until Spring

Serena Williams may not make her comeback on the women’s tennis tour until spring, she told the New York Post. “I hope to be out of the cast and back on court by spring,” the former world No. 1 told the paper at a fashion party in Miami.

Williams initially suffered the injury when she was cut on glass at a restaurant in Munich, Germany, on July 7. She received stitches in both feet and then needed further surgery to repair a lacerated tendon on the top of her right foot in Los Angeles on July 15.

At the time of the accident, the American was ranked No. 1, but the injury forced her to pull out of the U.S. Open. A hopeful Williams committed to playing in a handful of tournaments this fall, but her foot did not heal properly as she began training.

She underwent a second surgery on her injured foot in October and later pulled out of the Australian Open. Not only will Serena be unable to defend her title at Melbourne Park, but she may now reportedly miss a significant amount of time following the season's first major.
Williams, who has won five of her 13 Grand Slam singles titles at Melbourne Park, hasn’t played competitively since she retained her Wimbledon title in July.  Serena, having only played 6 tournaments, finished the year ranked fourth.

Serena's Training Tip

To get ahead of her competition, tennis champ Serena Williams exercises in the a.m. "Training early in the morning can give you an edge — knowing the other girl is sleeping while you're out there sweating," she says. Working out early gives you a burst of adrenaline and a sense of accomplishment, plus it'll help you stay more alert and energized throughout the day.

--- SELF Magazine

Serena inducted into California Hall of Fame


Serena: Out and about

Serena sporting a cast on her right leg as she leaves Prime One Twelve in South Beach.


Serena and Lil Wayne

Serena and Lil Wayne share a conversation at a basketball game.

November 25, 2010

Serena withdraws from Australian Open (WOW)!

MELBOURNE, Australia -- Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Australian Open due to a foot injury and won't be defending her title at the first tennis Grand Slam of next season. Tournament director Craig Tiley released a statement Thursday saying Williams had withdrawn from the Hopman Cup international mixed teams competition in Perth and the Australian Open in January. 

It will be the second consecutive major Williams will miss, and the loss of 2,000 rankings points could cost the 29-year-old American her place in the top 10.  Williams has only played one exhibition match since winning at Wimbledon last year. She had surgery after cutting her foot on broken glass at a restaurant following her title at Wimbledon. She returned to practice in September but twice put off her comeback, missing the U.S. Open, the season-ending WTA tournament, the Fed Cup and a handful of tour-level events. 

She said she had more surgery last month and couldn't risk returning before the injury had properly healed.  "As I recently learned, pushing myself back into my intense training too early only caused me further injury and damage," Williams was quoted as saying. "While I desperately want to be back on the court and competing in the first Grand Slam tournament of the year, it is imperative for my health that I continue to work with my doctors to ensure my foot heals properly. 

"This decision, though heavy on my heart, is the right one. I am praying for a healthy recovery and I promise my Aussie fans and my fans around the world that I will be back better than ever as soon as I can be." Williams has won the Australian Open five times, including the past two and is a popular draw in Melbourne. 

"Serena is a great champion and we will miss her in January," Tiley said. Sisters Serena and Venus Williams have been the dominant women in tennis for a decade, when fit. Serena has won at least one title from all four majors among her 13 Grand Slam singles crowns. Williams finished No. 4 in the rankings in 2010 despite only playing six tournaments, including her wins at the Australian Open and Wimbledon. 

She missed three months early in the season with a left knee injury, and hasn't played a tour tournament since Wimbledon. Despite that, she spent most of the year at No. 1 _ taking her career tally to 123 weeks atop the women's rankings _ until being replaced by Caroline Wozniacki on Oct. 11.  While recuperating, Serena Williams has spent time pursuing her wide-ranging business and fashion interests and work for her foundation, which is dedicated to educating children in Africa.

November 23, 2010

Serena commits to Bank of the West Classic

The Bank of the West Classic received an early holiday gift on Monday when it was announced that three of the world's top tennis players have committed to play the 2011 tournament including 13-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, three-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova and 2010 French Open finalist and current World No. 6 Samantha Stosur.  With another tremendous player field and a fun, family-friendly atmosphere the Bank of the West Classic will once again be the perfect place to see the world's best tennis, July 25-31 at Stanford's Taube Family Tennis Stadium.

Serena reportedly out of 2011 Hopman Cup

According to, Serena has pulled out of the 2011 Hopman Cup.

Williams has reportedly told organizers that she will be unable to play in 2011's opening event because she has not properly recovered from a foot injury. Williams was recently seen leaving an NFL game on crutches with her right foot in a cast. The 2010 Australian Open champion, who was scheduled to play in Perth with John Isner, has not played since winning Wimbledon.  Williams had been struggling with a foot injury since mysteriously cutting her foot in Munich back in July, which eventually required her to have surgery (18 stitches) to repair a damaged tendon, then an additional surgery because the injury had not healed properly.

Top 10 Most Intimidating Players

Michael Cansenti (featured columnist for The Bleacher Report) recently posted a list of the 10 Most Intimidating Players in the Open Era.  Serena is the only "active" female on the list.  Of the 10 players listed, only three are "active" (Rafael Nadal, Serena and Roger Federer).

10. Chris Evert
9.  John McEnroe
8.  Bjorn Borg
7.  Rafael Nadal
6.  Monica Seles
5.  Martina Navratilova
4.  Pete Sampras
3.  Serena Williams
Not just power, but dominance.  Power, dominance, power, dominance.  The two words that describe Serena Williams.  The two qualities that make Serena Williams so great on the tennis court. She won 4 consecutive grand slams, completing the "Serena Slam," and her aggression and mental toughness have been a first in this era.  Never before had we seen a player like Serena, and never will we see another player like Serena.

2. Roger Federer
1.  Steffi Graf

Serena attends Miami Dolphins game

Serena (along with friend, Kelly Rowland) recently attended a Miami Dolphins football game.

Serena attends Miami Heat games

 Serena attended Miami Heat basketball games (in Miami) on Wednesday and Friday.  Her she is seated next to Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh's fiancee, Adrienne Williams.

Serena "tweets" picture from gym

Bleacher Report Tennis Award

"2010 has been the epitome of a great season; Rafael Nadal's reign, Serena Williams's stay at the top, and many new faces have highlighted a splendid year.  However, who deserves the claim of attaining a "B/R Tennis Award?"

QUEEN OF THE COURT: Serena Williams

No question about this one, either.  Everyone, please lend a hand to...Serena Williams!  An injury-marred season wasn't enough to stop Serena from holding the No. 1 spot for the greater part of this year. However, Serena has sunk to the No. 4 spot after being sidelined with a foot injury after Wimbledon.  So much for watching the World Cup.  Because of her absence in big time tournaments in New York and Doha, she let loose her strangle hold on this year's tennis.

What still remains a mystery and will forever be is how Serena was able to keep her No. 1 ranking despite playing 6 tournaments.  It took Caroline Wozniacki and Vera Zvonereva almost the whole year to catch up with the great Serena.  The best player in women's tennis for years, Serena Williams will not let that title go this year.  (Runner up: Kim Clijsters)

By: Michael Cansenti (Featured Columnist) - Bleacher Report

The Slighting of Serena Williams

To some in the tennis establishment, for the world's best to lose her No 1 ranking seems a source of relief. Why would that be?

As the WTA season wraped up with the championships at Doha recently, Caroline Wozniacki, a 20 year old from Denmark, ended the tour ranked #1 in women's tennis – largely thanks to her consistency in winning minor WTA events. For many, Serena Williams, though knocked off the top spot in the rankings and unable, through injury, to defend her 2009 Doha title, remains clearly the supreme player of her generation. But in certain circles of the US tennis establishment, Wozniacki's emergence is seen as a positive development, precisely because it puts Williams "in her place". 

Chris Chase, a tennis correspondent for Yahoo Sports, for example, has a history of writing hostile commentary about Serena Williams. Recently, he accused Williams of "hyping" her foot injury – despite the fact that a torn tendon had forced her to pull out of all the season's remaining events.  And, he writes, Williams' fans should simply "deal with it" if Wozniacki is the new No 1.

ESPN writer Peter Bodo is another long-time critic of the Williams Sisters. Earlier this year, Bodo called the Williams sisters' patrotism "false and self-serving" because they had failed, as he saw it, to make a firm commitment to play for the US squad in the Federation Cup (the WTA tour version of the Davis Cup). And when the sisters again chose not to play the Indian Wells tournament this year, where Venus and her father Richard had been booed and allegedly racially abused following her withdrawal with injury from a match against Serena back in 2001, Tom Gainey of Tennis X said they should get over it.  Given this form, the question has to be asked, when has an American-born tennis champion ever been so disrespected as Serena Williams?

One reason why the American tennis establishment resents Serena Williams is because she doesn't make tennis her life. Williams is so superior to other women on the WTA that she can play part-time – and still win two out of the four grand slam singles titles.  But some of the establishment's almost palpable relief at Wozniacki's elevation is, frankly, because she's young, white and blonde; and is a physical type that conforms more closely to western stereotypes of female beauty than Williams' highly athletic physique. A female athlete, it seems, is not respected for her hard work and dedication; she still has to be a product on display to sell to heterosexual male consumers – and a dark-skinned, self-willed African American is not the preferred model.

For all her consistency, Wozniacki has never beaten any of the big four: either the Williams sisters, or the Belgians Kim Clijsters and Justine Henin. Wozniacki has a weak forehand, a lack of variety in her game, and the top elite women have the power to blast her off the court. The fact remains that Wozniacki is just another, relatively anonymous woman player who has reached No 1 without a grand slam title, just as Jelena Jankovic and Dinara Safina did. The idea that Wozniacki is any kind of "great white hope" is doubly misguided.  

Recently, Richard Williams, father of Venus and Serena,told the New York Times he believes the USTA discourages African American youth from pursuing the sport because they don't want blacks dominating tennis, which is still, culturally, a white sport. That is a view that chimes with the fact that Maria Sharapova is the highest-paid female athlete in the world, despite the fact she's only won three grand slam singles titles – ten less than Serena Williams has. So what is it that the Maria Sharapova or Caroline Wozniacki has that Serena Williams, the greatest champion US women's tennis has ever had, doesn't? Tennis ability has nothing to do with it. Prejudice has everything to do with it.

Article by: Orville Lloyd Douglas / (11/14/10)

Will Serena ever reach #1 again?

Over the years, we have come to associate Serena Williams with the No. 1 ranking in the women's game. Whenever a new and less proven woman ascends to the top spot, the critics are quick to declare this or that woman an "untrue" No. 1. Sometimes, like in the case of Dinara Safina, Serena contributes to the fuss. With 13 Slams titles to her name and a game strong and powerful enough to warrant speculation about her being the best ever, it is natural to doubt the ranking system, when she isn't automatically at the top.  The funny thing is, that despite her obvious talent and dominance, she's only been the No. 1 for a combined 123 weeks. That is six weeks more than Justine Henin, 25 weeks more than Lindsay Davenport and almost 100 weeks less than Martina Hingis. Not to mention Graf, Evert and Navratilova.

Kim Clijsters just won the WTA championships, whereas Serena as the defending champion didn't even play. In fact, she hasn't played on tour since Wimbledon and only played six tournaments this year. As a consequence, she lost her No. 1 ranking last month. Today, she fell out of the top three and now rests at No. 4.  Will she ever again be at the top of the rankings?

Looking at her results this year, it is clear that she can still play. Two Grand Slam victories in three appearances is pretty damn impressive on any standard. She is undoubtedly the fixture and the dominating player of the last decade, but will she continue to be so in the future? Or rather, will she dominate enough to reach the No. 1 spot again? I am in serious doubt about it.

She does perform better at bigger tournaments. With 13 Slam wins in a mere 16 finals, she's almost unbeatable when she can see the finish line. And as her game relies a lot more on her power and her ability to dominate her opponent than her speed, losing half a step in speed doesn't mean as much to her as it does to, say, Roger Federer.  She should be more than able to win Slams in the next 2-3 years at least. But the combined challenge presented by the current field seems to be too great for her to do it on a consistent basis and gain enough points throughout the year. At least not with working bees like Wozniacki, Zvonareva and Stosur out on the tour every day. 

Wozniacki's consistency requires Serena to either outperform any other player by a large margin in the big tournaments throughout the year or perform much more consistently, and more often, in the lesser tournaments. Is she willing to do that? Can she do that? Or is the opposition to tough, even for the champion of the decade?  My prediction, however, is that we'll never see her as the No. 1 again.

While I strongly disagree with the writer's statement that Serena will never be #1 again, you can read the entire article (wherein the writer presents some valid analysis) by clicking on the link below:

Anders Lammers (Contributor) - Bleacher Report

Serena joins "Buy Life" campaign

Serena has joined “Buy Life”, a campaign that benefits Alicia Keys’ “Keep A Child Alive” foundation. She is joined by Alicia Keys, Kim Kardashian, Katie Holmes, Willow and Jaden Smith, Usher, Swizz Beatz, Jay Sean, and Ryan Seacrest.  The program was created to raise money for children living with HIV/Aids and also provides nutrition, shelter, education and basic needs worldwide.

Can Serena win the Grand Slam of Grand Slams?

(Nov 9, 2010) - It was the great Margaret Court who dominated Ladies tennis prior to the ‘open era’ back in the sixties, but she was soon forgotten as Ladies tennis became far more competitive once prize money (and lots of it) became available. The seventies and eighties was shared almost ‘down the middle’ between two legends of the women's game, Chris Evert from the USA and Martina Navratilova, originally from Czechoslovakia but later of the USA, who won 36 Grand Slam titles between them (18 each). Whilst Navratilova had the edge on grass, it was Evert who dominated on clay with honors shared on the hard courts, but it was the rivalry between the two that helped to put Ladies tennis into the big time.

The eighties also saw the emergence of arguably the greatest ladies player of all time in the form of leggy German, Steffi Graf. She went on to dominate most of the nineties, eclipsing all those who had reigned before her, winning an incredible 22 Grand Slam singles titles, shared almost equally between the four tournaments, which of course are played on four different surfaces. She is the only woman in the ‘open era’ to win all four Grand Slams in the same year, which she achieved in 1988.  It was not as if she had no rivalries of her own, because she did. Navratilova was her first in the late eighties and early nineties but then came Monica Seles, herself a winner of 8 ‘Slams’ plus of course the dogged, Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario, who won four.

It was hard to imagine that the world could produce someone even better than Graf, however, no-one had considered dedicated father, Richard Williams, who had nurtured the talents of two seriously athletic children of his; namely Venus and Serena.  Venus the older of the two Williams sisters was first to hit the headlines, winning several tournaments and climbing up the world rankings eventually establishing herself in the top ten. Few  realized however at that time that Venus was only the Williams second string as Serena was soon to prove. Serena had made similar progress as her older sister, winning one or two small tournaments but also getting herself  into the world’s top ten.

It was not long however before Serena made the world sit up and take note by winning the 1999 US Open, defeating the then world number one, Martina Hingis in the final.  She had overtaken her sister in the world rankings, whilst at the same time captured the imagination of the tennis world.  It was to some great surprise therefore that Serena for several spurious reasons dropped back out of the limelight and failed to win another ‘Slam’ for almost three years. In that time Venus had dominated the game winning back to back Slams at both Wimbledon and the US Open in 2000 and 2001, becoming world number one in the process.

It was probably in the wake of her sister’s success that Serena began her own earnest assault on the ladies tennis world. She began that assault by winning the French Open on her least favorite clay surface in 2002, defeating her sister in the final. She went on that year to win Wimbledon for the first time and take her second US Open. She also won the Australian Open in January 2003, which made her only the fifth woman to hold all four Grand Slam titles simultaneously.
Since those heady days Serena has gone on to win 13 Grand Slam titles compared to the seven won by Venus.

Although currently injured, she will be the defending champion in 2011 of both the Australian Open and at Wimbledon and will be looking to seal her ambition of becoming the first player since Graf in 1988 to win a calendar year Grand Slam. She begins her quest at the Australian Open, which takes place January 17-30, 2011 in Melbourne and who could argue about her credentials of adding more majors to her roll of honour and at the age of 29 she still has time to confirm her place as the greatest women's player of all time.

Rod Crowley (Contributor) - Bleacher Report

Event buzz limited w/o injured Williams sisters

DOHA, Qatar (AP) Nov.3 -- Tennis fans in the Gulf are used to seeing Serena and Venus Williams at the WTA Championships. Each sister won the season-ending title recently, and coming into this year's event, their images were everywhere from billboards to tournament programs. 

Both were no-shows last week, though, because of injuries. And both will also miss this weekend's Fed Cup final in San Diego between the United States and Italy. Sidelined by two operations on her right foot after getting cut by glass at a restaurant, Serena Williams hasn't played a competitive match since winning Wimbledon on July 3. Hobbled by a bad left knee, Venus Williams has only played in one tournament, the U.S. Open, since losing at the All England Club on June 29.

"The absence of the Williams sisters at any event -- be it a major or non-major -- is significant," said Jason Bernstein, a senior director in ESPN's programming department. "Fans, print and electronic media interest, TV ratings and overall buzz are all reduced." Serena has won 13 Grand Slam singles titles -- the most among active women, by far, and sixth in history -- and Venus has won seven. Despite their lack of playing time in 2010, both finished the WTA season in the top five. No other American woman is in the top 50.

Asked about not having the Williams sisters, Fernandez said: "Of course it's disappointing. The whole team was really looking forward to having both Venus and Serena on the team." The interest generated by the Williams sisters' ascension -- both have been ranked No. 1, including Serena as recently as last month -- is widely credited with the decision to move the U.S. Open women's final to prime time in 2001. Venus beat Serena that year for the championship, and nearly 23 million viewers tuned in to the CBS broadcast, giving the final the largest TV audience of any program that night, including a football game between Notre Dame and Nebraska. 

That 2001 U.S. Open final drew a 6.8 rating, and the Williams-Williams rematch the next year earned a 5.2. The only other U.S. Open women's final since 2001 with a rating higher than 2.7 came in 2008 -- the only other time a Williams reached the championship match in New York. Bernstein called the sisters "game-changers for the sport" and "compelling to watch." WTA chief executive Stacey Allaster called the Williamses "two of the most exciting and finest players we have had in our history." 

At the WTA Championships last week, the Williams' absence was hard to miss.  "I just feel sorry for Williams sisters, that they are not here," said two-time major finalist Elena Dementieva, who announced her own retirement in Doha. "With them, it's really interesting and challenging for the rest of the players."