Venus Williams, making her 24th appearance at Wimbledon, lost her first round match on Monday after initially withdrawing from a knee injury.
Elina Svitolina defeated Williams in straight sets 6-4, 6-3. In the third game of the first set, Williams collapsed in pain after twisting her right knee at an odd angle. Play resumed after a few minutes, but the match was never very close.
Williams, 43, has stayed in pro singles play longer than her sister Serena, who announced her plans to “step away” from tennis last September after the US Open. Venus Williams has won five Wimbledon singles titles, more than only three other players in history, but has not advanced beyond the third round at any major tournament since 2018. In 2021, he made his record 90th appearance in a Grand Slam. He has also won 90 singles matches at Wimbledon, which is a record.
Monday’s match had an unfavorable ending, with replay review confirming that Svitolina’s return of serve had caught the line for the winner. Williams could not suppress her smile at the irony of not being able to complete the final point of the match, instead having it decided by the computer.
Since her sister is no longer competing, Williams is constantly being asked by reporters if she is considering retiring from tennis. She tactfully retorted that she could play till the age of 50. “It’s never been done before, so if there was anyone to try it, it would be me,” he said tongue in cheek, “There are really great insurance benefits on the tour. I need them so I feel like I can move on too!”
Here are short clips of the injury and match point: