Sunday, December 30, 2007

Serena Ready To Go In Australia

Serena Williams shrugged off a delayed arrival at the Hopman Cup on Sunday, blaming her tardiness on a stomach virus and insisting she's in position to win a second straight Australian Open. The eight-time Grand Slam champion had been unable to play in the opening tie for the four-time winner US, which beat Indian through Mardy Fish and one-off replacement Meghann Shaughnessy.

"I was so glad to hear they had won," said the American, who played one set against Russian Anna Chakvetadze at the season-ending championships in Madrid last month before retiring with a knee problem.

"I'm good," she said of her current fitness. "I wanted to come here and play, but being late was the only option.

"I'll be playing one match at a time. My ankle is fine and I'm focusing on the Open.

"I don't like to play the week before Slams, so this event is perfect timing. I have no pressure and I'm here to win the Open just like everyone else."

Williams will go into action on Monday against Lucie Safarova when the US face the Czech Republic.

Williams beat Safarova twice last season, the first time a year ago at a small event in Hobart, Tasmania. She stands 8-0 at the event, winning the 2003 title with partner James Blake.


Some said that her delay was due to a planned appearance at a New Year's party thrown by Jay-Z that didn't happen because the venue failed inspection.

If the party never happened, Serena won't be in any pictures, and I guess we'll never know if she was really sick and/or injured, or simply trying to have her cake and eat it too. Whatever the case, she's now in Australia and ready to compete.

ABC News Clip: Serena Interview and Highlights


Karen said...

It is a sad state of affairs when even fans of Serena are now speculating as to whether she was really ill or not to play tennis. Serena sweetheart, if you ever get on a computer and come to this blog, I would strongly advise that you clean up your act, apply yourself to your tennis and leave a legacy on which you can be proud. Already, even your fans are beginning to question how you will be remembered. Babygirl, you are and will always be the IT girl of the WTA. Right now Tennis Channel has usurped a match between yourself and your sister to present the Lendl/Becker match. They have been presenting these classic matches for the last 3 weeks and the women have always been played before the men, yet this week, the men have been played before the women. This change was only made tonight as up to yesterday your match was scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Yourself and your sister have inspired many and have been the envy of many. Leave a legacy behind on which you can be proud. You have been quoted as saying that you look up to your big sister Venus, follow her example and do something positive. Be the champion we all know you to be.

Pamela said...

Karen, I normally like your posts, but I can't agree with you here. Serena isn't fresh on the tour and ready to run to every tournament like Jelena. She's 26, and injury prone - like it or not, those are facts.

There's nothing wrong with her legacy. She's done incredible things for herself, the game of tennis, for women, and especially Black female athletes. She does not have to live her life solely for tennis, regardless of the amount of time we'd like to see her play. Her and Venus are two separate people, so the expectations are not and should not be the same. I'm nothing like my sister, why should we expect to her act like Venus? If her own fans doubt her sincerity and integrity then ... are they really fans? I will never fault her for actually having a life and kudos to her for living it. She'll never end up like Capriati without a clue as to what she should do with herself after tennis. She did James Blake and Andy Roddick's charity a couple of weeks ago, but you barely heard a peep about that.

She will be remembered as a champion who broke barriers. Could she possibly do or have done more? Yes - but that's up to her, not us. I'm quite proud of her.

Karen said...

Pamela, I am one of Serena's biggest fans but the point of my post was to question whether her injuries are really injuries or whether she was planning to, as is being reported, going to Jay Z's party. Like you I am very proud of Serena. I think she is a fighter and she has done a lot for women's tennis. That being said, I watched the AO 2003 match last night and the fire in her eyes and in her belly is just not there. I am not saying that it should be there all the time, but I like many of her fans wished she would get that fire back and trounce these upstarts on the Tour. It sickens me when I see players who are not as talented as Serena beat her down and the look on her face of disbelief because she did not come prepared. I love Serena to death and am quite proud of the fact that she has interests everywhere. The question to be asked is where have those interests put her. Venus also has interests elsewhere. She has her own company, graduated fashion school, has her own clothing line and a steady boyfriend. Serena on the other hand seems to be acting like she is 19 and just coming on tour. I hate to see her being photographed in somewhat compromising situations (torn stockings exiting a limo). I am sure that her parents are none too happy with the way she is conducting her public life. I know she is young and she needs to find herself, I just wish it happened sooner rather than later.