Serena takes time out to heal
DATE: 2015.10.01

Serena Williams has announced her withdrawal from the China Open, the world No.1 explaining the need to focus on her health after a successful but demanding season.


“It’s no secret I’ve played injured most of the year — whether it was my elbow, my knee, or, in the finals moments after a certain match in Flushing, my heart,” said Serena, referencing the recent US Open semifinal loss to Roberta Vinci, which ended her bid to claim the calendar-year Grand Slam.


“I’m a fierce competitor,” she added. “And I want to compete as well as I can, for as long as I can. So I am taking a proactive step and withdrawing from tournaments in Beijing and Singapore to properly address my health and take the time to heal.”

The two-time Beijing champion (Serena defeated Svetlana Kuznetsova to win the 2004 title and overcame Jelena Jankovic for victory in 2013) noted the importance of a longer-term focus on her career.


“This is a very difficult decision, but one ultimately made because of the love of the game. I plan to return to practicing and participating in exhibition matches later this year. And when I do, l will focus and focus and focus so I can continue my journey in this beautiful game.”


The winner of 69 career titles since 1999, Serena is grateful to have experienced one of the most successful periods in her long career.


(Photo By Ron)


“Arthur Ashe once said, 'Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome. My journey in tennis this year has been at times exhilarating, at times disappointing, but in every case, in victory and defeat, it has been extremely rewarding,” Serena explained, adding that five titles, including three of the four Grand Slams, are a testament to both her development and the support that boosts her success.


“I’ve grown more this year than perhaps at any other point in my career. The tennis family, and our fans, have embraced and supported me in ways I never imagined. I am grateful beyond words.


“I love this game more than ever. I hold deep respect for all those who have graced our courts. I’ve been privileged to be one of the few to understand their struggles and their triumphs.”


Despite the early end to her competitive schedule, Serena completes 2015 with one of the most successful seasons in WTA history.With a win-loss record of 53-3, her only losses occurred against Petra Kvitova in Madrid, Belinda Bencic in Toronto and Vinci at the US Open.


She secured the 2015 year-end world No.1 ranking for a fifth time after her semifinal run in New York.(By Vivienne Christie)