Published: Sat, July 14, 2018
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Wimbledon 2018: Serena Williams battles through opening challenge

Wimbledon 2018: Serena Williams battles through opening challenge

As she returns to tennis following the birth of her daughter, she is priced up at second favourite to win this year's Wimbledon title despite being ranked just 183rd in the world, a testament to her astonishing ability.

"There isn't too much I can do - I'm not going to go and cry". He is the first man in the Open era to play in the grass-court Grand Slam for a 20th straight year. “I dont go out there expecting to ‘do well or ‘see what happens. Now that Im not playing doubles in this event, I have the day off, I think that will help.”.

"In the village I live in, in Switzerland, the tester lives in the same village, so it's very convenient". You guys are making me miss her. "I'll get there; I'll take it one match at a time".

The eight-time champion began his title defense in style at the All England Club, brushing aside Dusan Lajovic of Serbia 6-1, 6-3, 6-4 in 79 minutes on Centre Court.

Williams has won her past 14 matches at Wimbledon, with consecutive titles in 2015 and 2016, in addition to those she collected in 2002, 2003, 2009, 2010 and 2012.

“I felt guilty, ” Williams said about her time in Paris. I really dont like being away from her, ” Williams said. "I think it just speaks to who I am as an athlete and who Serena is". Did he put a time limit on it?

"We are in it together. I nearly want to feel the need to go out there and be the best that I can be". The first was at last year's French Open, which ended up in tears at her post-match press conference after losing to France's Kristina Mladenovic in the last 16.

Lajovic held serve in the opening game but that was as good as it got for the 58th-ranked Serb.

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But at the same tournament where he played what proved to be his last match of 2017, the 33-year-old was rejuvenated.

Six-time champion Venus Williams overcame a scare to beat Swede Johanna Larsson.

Williams came back from a set down to win 6-7 (3/7) 6-2 6-1.

Caroline Wozniacki safely navigated her way past Varvara Lepchenko. She had little trouble getting past the American, winning 6-0 6-3. Pliskova ousted Harriet Dart earlier Monday.

The Czech, who will be eyeing her maiden grand slam success at SW19, needed three sets, triumphing 7-6 (7/2) 2-6 6-1. "I was really, really, really down", Williams said about the injury. The end was happy.

"They know that there is a trophy involved at some point if I do play well, because they get most excited about the trophies".

Serena Williams: "I don't know if I'm relieved or more motivated". "I'm definitely finding my bearings out there". "Until I read that article I didn't realize it was such a discrepancy with me as well as against the other players that they listed, at least the American players - both male and female". Kohlschreiber defeated Evgeny Donskoy of Russian Federation 6-2, 6-4, 7-5, while Struff got past Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 3-6, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5), 6-1.

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