Serena unsure about playing in year's remaining grand slams

   Serena Williams missed the Australian Open due to fitness concerns

Williams will join her sister Venus in helping the United States begin its Fed Cup title defense Sunday against the Netherlands.

Williams shared sets with Ostapenko before losing a super tiebreaker and appeared a little slow on her feet, even as she played some fine shots.

But it remains unclear when the 23-time major victor will again feature in a grand slam.

Williams owns a 13-0 singles record and 3-1 doubles record in Fed Cup competition. "It's a great opportunity to get, I mean, a new set of eyes on what I've been doing with Kathy", Williams told reporters after the draw ceremony where it was determined she would play with world number 62 Lauren Davis. "It's just great to be playing the game that I love - not really going for milestones, but then they happen".

Her Dutch opponent was unable to hold her own and later admitted she had let her nerves get to her as the first set slipped away. Every day, I get better and I get stronger. I was a bit nervous. The 36-year-old and former world no.

Williams acknowledged the second half was tighter than it could have been.

"If you look at Serena, how often does she lose to someone that's not ranked in the top 10 or top 20 or outside the top 100?" he said.

I think that's normal for everything that I've gone through.

Williams has not played a WTA tournament since she won the Australian Open title last year and skipped this year's opening grand slam due to concerns about her fitness four months after giving birth to her first child.

For Williams, this weekend will mark the first time she has competed in a Fed Cup tie since April 2015. "Sometimes that happens, (it's) just the beginning of the year".

Vandeweghe charged home in the decisive set to give her side a comfortable lead heading into Sunday's reverse singles and doubles closer.

The final scoreline was far closer than the players' rankings, 17 and 108 respectively, had suggested it should be.

Former world number one Serena Williams, who is looking to return to the top of her sport after taking a break due to her pregnancy, has not played a competitive match since she won the Australian Open title previous year for her Open-era record 23rd grand slam.

She received a big ovation during team introductions and sat on the court with her teammates during Venus's match.



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