EASTBOURNE, England – This seaside town has seen some big guest visits before – Novak Djokovic decided at the last minute to play the ATP 250 event here a few years ago.
But Serena Williams rocking up to make her return to competitive tennis after a nearly a year is quite a thing.
There were some big, burly guys around, a full entourage, agent Jill Smoller and, of course, doubles partner Ons Jabeur.
Jabeur is so lively – after coming up to greet Williams, she also went around to shake hands with all of the members of her team.
Here’s some video of the preamble and the warmup session this afternoon.
(Also a stand out: Jabeur is listed at 5-foot-6; Williams is listed at 5-foot-9. But it seems like a bigger difference than that).
Williams didn’t look very … mobile during this doubles warmup. Although that’s not surprising; she’s nearly 41, and she’s been out of action for a year.
She still strikes the ball just as sweetly.
We’ll see how she looks on court.