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Serena Williams sends ominous warning to rivals amid coronavirus enforced break

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Williams started the 2020 season in great form, winning the Auckland Open for the first time.

But just when the American was gaining momentum at the Australian Open she was dumped out of the tournament in the third round by Qiang Wang.

In February, Williams represented her country in the Fed Cup and suffered a surprise defeat to Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova but the US were still able to reach the Finals.

And in an emotional video, Williams admitted she was coping with feelings of anxiety and stress.

However, being at home with her family appears to have raised the 23-time Grand Slam singles champion’s spirits and in an Instagram Live session with her sister Venus, the 38-year-old said she was eager to get back to action.

She said: “I really look forward to getting back on the court. It’s what I do best. I absolutely love playing.

“But this break is a necessary evil. I felt like my body needed it, even though I didn’t want it.

“And now I’m feeling better than ever. I’m feeling more relaxed, more fit. Now I’m just like: Now I can go out and play real tennis.”

Meanwhile, tennis legend Martina Navratilova believes Williams and Roger Federer will be viewing the break from tennis as ‘time lost’.

The duo are in the final stages of their decorated careers and Navratilova reckons the hiatus could have an impact on their legacies.

Navratilova told Laureus.com: “For players like Roger Federer and Serena Williams, it’s time lost.

“Particularly Serena, Wimbledon being her best chance to break Margaret Court’s record. She’s stuck on 23 and tries to get to 24, maybe 25.

“It’s an opportunity lost when you’re not getting any younger. If I was sitting in that position I’d be going nuts that I can’t play.

“Everybody’s in the same boat, but for the old players like Roger and even Rafa (Rafael Nadal) and particularly Serena, it’s more difficult, no doubt about that.”

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We spread rumours of Rafael Nadal doping’ because he was too good, says French star

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Gilles Simon believes doping rumours were spread about Rafael Nadal as many were uncomfortable with the idea he could simply be better than Roger Federer.

There were allegations of a connection between Nadal and Eufemiano Fuentes, the doctor who was ultimately jailed for his part in a Spanish cycle doping scandal.

No evidence has ever been produced linking Fuentes to Nadal, though, who has always very successfully denied any rumours to the contrary.

However, Simon believes the rumours only existed to discredit opinions that Nadal could actually be a better tennis players than Federer rather than just a better athlete.

“It is difficult to conceive [for some] that, in terms of game, Rafael Nadal could be better than Roger Federer,” Gilles Simon wrote in his new autobiography This Sport That Makes You Crazy

“We even spread rumours of doping on his account.

“Nadal does not fit into the framework. Moreover, I emphasize here that we never talk about the physique of Federer, who has little to envy that of Nadal.

“That he went five sets at 35 like what he did in Australia in 2017, it’s extraordinary. But no one noted this point.”

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