WTA Tour

Williams should look to Nadal for inspiration

Serena Williams (Getty)
Serena Williams (Getty)

Johannesburg - After failing to live up to expectations in two tournaments, 23-time grand slam champion Serena Williams will be keen to get back to winning ways.

Williams took a month break following her disappointing comeback at the Miami Open and Indian Wells.

The former world number one will be hoping to resurrect her career on the clay courts of the Madrid Open next week.

Williams has not performed well since her return from a yearlong maternity break.

She lost to her sister Venus in the third round of the Indian Wells and to Japanese player Naomi Osaka in the first round of the Miami Open.

Her last victory was at last year’s Australian Open, which she missed this year.

She made her return at the Fed Cup, where she and her sister lost to the Netherlands pair of Lesley Kerkhove and Demi Schuurs in the doubles category.

But Williams can draw inspiration from fellow tennis player Rafael Nadal, who explosively defended his Monte Carlo Masters last week after coming back from a string of injuries.

Nadal beat Japanese player Kei Nishikori in the final, after easing past then world number three Grigor Dimitrov in the semi-finals.

But it was not at all easy for Nadal, who not long ago had to withdraw from multiple tournaments owing to leg injuries.

Late last year, he pulled out of the quarter-finals of the Paris Masters and the ATP Finals in London.

The 16-time grand slam champion also withdrew from the quarter-final match of the Australian Open against Marin Cilic this January.

He later pulled out from the Mexican Open, the Indian Wells Masters and the Miami Open.

A recurring hip injury led to his losing his number one ATP ranking to Roger Federer, before regaining it after Federer lost to Juan Martín del Potro and failed to defend his Indian Wells Masters points. Federer had won the title last year.

There is no doubt that Williams, a six-time Wimbledon champion, still has fire burning to win more titles.

She told Vogue magazine: “Maybe this goes without saying, but it needs to be said in a powerful way. I absolutely want more grand slams. I’m well aware of the record books, unfortunately. It’s not a secret that I have my sights on 25 [grand slam titles],” she said.

Williams will compete in the French Open later next month.

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