Serena Williams announces tennis return just FOUR months after giving birth

Serena Williams announces tennis return just FOUR months after giving birth

After nearly a year away, Williams is making her return at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship Saturday in Abu Dhabai against French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, according to tournament organizers.

Williams and Ostapenko will be the first women to participate in the 10th edition of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship, which has long marked the beginning of the men's global tennis season.

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - Serena Williams is returning to competition with an exhibition match Saturday in Abu Dhabi against French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko.

Sport reports that Williams, 36, will make her big comeback next week at an exhibition match in Abu Dhabi, playing world number 7 Jelena Ostapenko from Latvia.

Williams, who gave birth to Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr.in September, got married to Alexis Ohanian last month.

Williams' comeback raises the prospect of a renewal of her one-sided rivalry with Maria Sharapova, after the Russian's own comeback earlier this year from a doping ban. She is expected to compete for her 24th at the Australian Open, the first major of the year.

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Men's world No.1 Rafael Nadal was also supposed to play in the event but withdrew due to ongoing troubles with his knee.

Australian Open director Craig Tilley has been confident that she will take part, however, saying it is "very likely" that Williams will take to the court on 15 January.

Williams's name appears on the entry list for the tournament, which runs January 15-28.

"For the tennis fans in the UAE, having Serena here as part of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship weekend is a thrilling opportunity to see even more world-class tennis", he said in a statement.

Djokovic, a 12-time Grand Slam champion, has not played competitively since his quarterfinal loss in July to Tomas Berdych at Wimbledon because of an elbow injury.

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