Wimbledon will take place this year with only one of the Williams sisters.
Venus Williams announced on Facebook this afternoon that she is dropping out of the tournament, which begins June 24, because of back problems.
Unfortunately, I will not be able to participate in Wimbledon this year. I am extremely disappointed as I have always loved The Championships, but I need to take time to let my back heal. I look forward to returning to the courts as soon as possible, with my goal being to return to Mylan World Team Tennis on July 8th in Washington DC. Many thanks to my fans for the love and support and I will be seeing you very soon back on the courts.
After her first-round loss in the French Open last month, Williams vowed to play on, even as her career appears to be winding down.
“With what I’ve gone through, it’s not easy,” she said (via the New York Times). “But I’m strong and I’m a fighter. You know, I don’t think I’m just playing for me now. I think I’m playing for a lot of people who haven’t felt well. I think for me today it’s a positive to be able to play three hours. I’m constantly finding ways to get better and to feel better.”
Williams, who turned 33 on Monday, most recently won Wimbledon in 2007 and 2008. Venus and Serena have won 10 Wimbledon singles titles since 2000.
“I wouldn’t just give up just because it was difficult,” Williams said. “That’s not me. So my thing is that I’m going to keep continue trying.
“I had a very challenging year last year, but I had many successes, as well. So I’m continuing to look forward to more successes.”
As Venus Williams’s career wanes, her sister’s has reached a new ascendance. Serena Williams, who also has five Wimbledon titles, will enter Wimbledon dominating the women’s game…and without Venus.