Serena Williams will face France’s Harmony Tan in the first round of Wimbledon.©TSWT
Serena Williams was drawn on Friday to face France’s Harmony Tan in the first round of Wimbledon as she returns to singles after a year’s absence. Defending men’s champion Novak Djokovic begins his quest for a seventh title against South Korea’s Kwon Soon-woo, ranked 75th in the world. At first, the All England Club will focus on Williams, a 23-time Grand Slam singles champion who has fallen to 1,204th in the world rankings and is unseeded for the tournament, which begins on Monday. The 40-year-old, who took part in the doubles tournament at Eastbourne this week, has not played singles since suffering the injury in her opening round match at Wimbledon 12 months ago.
Tan, 24, is ranked 113th in the world.
Top seed Iga Swiatek, who won the French Open earlier this month, opens her campaign against Croatian qualifier Jana Fett.
Poland’s Swiatek, 21, has won 35 consecutive matches leading to Wimbledon.
Williams’ preparations for Wimbledon suffered a major blow after doubles partner Ons Jabeur withdrew from the Eastbourne tournament with a knee injury on Thursday.
The American won the last of her seven singles titles at Wimbledon in 2016 but reached the final in 2018 and 2019 after returning from having a baby.
Wimbledon is widely considered Williams’ best chance to win a 24th Grand Slam singles crown to equal Margaret Court’s all-time record.
The last of his Grand Slam singles titles came at the Australian Open in 2017.
Speaking after Wednesday’s doubles match, Williams said: “I feel good. As good as one could feel after such a long time away.”
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