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“If Serena WIlliams can practice well and she’s feeling fit, obviously she could be a threat” – Patrick McEnroe

McEnroe is pumped about the return of Serena Williams as is reigning world No 1 Iga Swiatek and former women’s top 10 player Andrea Petkovic

Serena Williams at Wimbledon in 2019 Image Credit: Antoine Couvercelle / Panoramic

The tennis world has been abuzz with the eagerly awaited comeback of Serena Williams, which gets underway with a doubles appearance at Eastbourne next week before hitting speed at Wimbledon, where the 23-time Grand Slam champion will play singles.

Coming back after a year on the sidelines is never easy for any player, even for a 23-time Grand Slam champion. But former US Davis Cup captain and leading tennis commentator Patrick McEnroe believes that Serena could be a threat at the All England Club if she is fit and has practiced well.

“I’m pumped that she’s playing. Am I optimistic about how well she can do? I’m not optimistic and maybe honest, but she is Serena. So if she can practice well and she’s feeling fit, obviously she could be a threat,” McEnroe said. “Obviously she’ll be susceptible particularly in the first couple of matches and as we know in women’s tennis now, there’s a lot more depth.”

Without a ranking and with Wimbledon using the the world rankings to seed players, Serena Williams will be unseeded this year and could run into any of the top 32 players in the very first round. McEnroe says if the old seeding system was still in place, he would not mind seeing Serena seeded simply because she has won so much in the past.

“Will she be seeded? I guess not because Wimbledon got rid of their system a couple of years ago. She should be unseeded because she hasn’t played at all. I might make the case, you know, throw her in at seed number 28 or something just because she’s Serena and she’s won a gazillion times, she’s won 23 majors,” continued McEnroe.

“We could have Serena-Swiatek in the opening round. I’m glad she’s making the effort to come back. Do I expect her to make a deep run? I don’t expect it. Will I be shocked? No, because she’s Serena.”

“What a news, see you there” – Swiatek on the return of Serena Williams

McEnroe is not the only one excited about Williams’ return to the tour. Reigning world No 1 Iga Swiatek, who ahs won her last 35 matches in a row, commented on Serena’s Instagram post about her return.

“What a news, see you there,” Swiatek said on Williams’ Instagram post.

Meanwhile, former women’s top 10 player Andrea Petkovic said it was great for women’s tennis to have Serena back in the mix but hoped that she would not draw the American in the first round.

“Serena’s return is good for her and bad for us. I think it’s great for the women’s Tour to have her back. Some of my American friends said Serena has low-keyed retired, but I refused to believe that. I’m looking forward to seeing her at tournaments again. I hope I do not play against her in the first round. I think Serena will be super-fit for Wimbledon; otherwise, she would not try. She must have been working very hard in the last couple of weeks,” Petkovic said.

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