PARIS — It has been a frustrating year at the office so far for Serena Williams, filled with old injuries that have resurfaced and new ones that have scuttled her chances. It has been a season where the opportunities to play actual tennis matches and finish the few she has started have been far too rare.
But Williams was back in the public eye and in harm’s way at the French Open at age 37 on Monday, even if many other veteran tennis champions would have skipped the experience altogether and started preparing for the grass-court season and Wimbledon, which she has won seven times.
“It crossed my mind every day,” she said, when asked whether she had considered it. “But I’m here. And to do the best that I can do.”
In the opening set against the unseeded Vitalia Diatchenko on Monday, Williams’s best bore no resemblance to her finest tennis. She missed groundstrokes by the bunch and service returns by the bushel. She looked edgy and rusty.
But Williams, the winner of 23 Grand Slam singles titles, is nothing if not a fighter.
Final score of the first-round duel: 2-6, 6-1, 6-0.
“I knew it couldn’t get worse,” Williams said. “I knew I could only go up. ”
[French Open scoreboard: men’s singles | women’s singles]
For Williams, the challenge, based on this year’s struggles, is simply to stay healthy enough to keep competing in the tournament. She has played just one match on clay this season and visited Disneyland Paris last week in a wheelchair to conserve energy and avoid putting added strain on her troublesome left knee, which had caused her to withdraw from the Miami Open and Italian Open this year.
Another withdrawal is hardly unthinkable. She hit a high level quickly last year with just as meager clay-court preparation before withdrawing after three rounds with a pectoral injury.
“This is a much bigger challenge on clay than on grass,” Chris Evert, the seven-time French Open champion, said of Williams, noting that fitness and movement are essential here. “I do think she’s playing with a little less pressure in Paris because she’s a work in progress and knows her preparation hasn’t been ideal, and she still has two more Grand Slam tournaments ahead of her this year. She is the underdog in a sense.”
It is such a rare role for Williams to play, but she has yet to win a tournament since returning to competition in February 2018 after the birth of her daughter, Olympia. And after scanning her 2019 results, which won’t take long, and observing her against Diatchenko, underdog seems just the right word in Paris this year.
After the match, Williams had to navigate another challenge in the interview room. Nike, her longtime sponsor, has used her working motherhood as a feel-good marketing tool: The cape she wore during the warm-up on Monday featured the word mère (French for mother) in its design.
But in articles and videos for The New York Times opinion department over the past two weeks, some of Nike’s sponsored athletes in track and field, including the world champion sprinter Allyson Felix, said the company failed to guarantee the same level of income during pregnancy and early maternity.
It is unclear what Nike’s policies have been in women’s tennis, but after Felix and other prominent runners like Alysia Montaño and Kara Goucher came forward, the company announced last week that it would waive performance-pay reductions for a year for athletes who decide to have a baby.
“I’m glad that statement was made,” said Williams, who surely knew a question about Nike’s position was coming. “That’s what it’s about. It’s about learning from mistakes and doing better.”
Williams’s latest French Open outfit by Nike — a midriff-baring ensemble — seemed out of context with a chill in the air and an overcast sky over the new-look Chatrier Court. She eventually put on a black Nike jacket. The stands in the 15,000-seat stadium were less than half full.
Williams said she felt as if she was striking the ball cleanly in training ahead of the tournament, but match pressure changed the equation.
She faced her first break points after just three minutes of play. She saved them, but the struggle was real.
Diatchenko, a lean and unorthodox Russian with two-handed groundstrokes, upset Maria Sharapova in the first round of Wimbledon last year. Her flat shots are tricky to read, and she cracked winners off both wings in the early going that left the nervous Williams looking befuddled, flat footed and beside herself.
“Like concrete blocks on my feet,” Williams said.
She lost her serve at love in the fifth game and then won only one point on her serve in the seventh game. There were a few boos from the crowd, and after the first set, Williams sat in her chair on the changeover shaking her head and talking to herself. After she fell behind by 15-30 on her serve in the opening game of the second set, she turned to wait for the ball to be delivered by one of the ballpersons and put her head back and screamed in frustration.
“I don’t think I have ever done that before,” Williams said of Monday’s roar. “The past week and half has been really good, and God, it was like, this isn’t the Serena I have been practicing with or that I see every day.”
Cue catharsis: Williams went on to win the next three points and hold serve.
She would lose just one more game before securing her place in the second round, where she will face either the Japanese qualifier Kurumi Nara, ranked 238th, or Dalila Jakupovic, a Slovenian ranked 105th.
Not a bad draw for someone who has played only 10 matches this year and is trying to work her way into form.
“Look, I would pick the field over her only because of her lack of match play,” Evert said. “But nothing would surprise me with Serena.”
百万高手论坛资料 百度云【那】【叫】【雀】【儿】【的】【小】【厮】，【此】【时】【稍】【微】【喘】【匀】【了】【气】，【忙】【伸】【手】【拦】【了】【她】，“【嬷】【嬷】【别】【急】，【是】【少】【主】【子】【用】【霹】【雳】【箭】【射】【中】【了】【马】【棚】，【马】【棚】【着】【火】【惊】【了】【马】，【其】【中】【有】【匹】【烈】【马】【没】【能】【拦】【住】，【跑】【到】【这】【边】【来】【了】……【大】【管】【事】【正】【好】【在】，【已】【经】【追】【上】【去】【了】……” 【张】【嬷】【嬷】【提】【起】【的】【心】【顿】【时】【落】【地】，【微】【微】【皱】【了】【眉】【看】【雀】【儿】，“【既】【然】【是】【让】【你】【们】【伺】【候】【着】【少】【主】，【他】【射】【箭】【用】【的】【都】【是】【去】【了】【箭】【尖】【的】，【又】
【一】【剑】【将】【杨】【万】【里】【斩】【首】【之】【后】，“【张】【家】【小】【姐】”【用】【黑】【色】【布】【袋】【将】【他】【的】【首】【级】【装】【了】【起】【来】，【然】【后】【打】【开】【后】【窗】【一】【跃】【而】【出】，【没】【入】【黑】【暗】【之】【中】。 【长】【乐】【帮】【众】【人】【还】【在】【外】【面】【高】【声】【吆】【喝】【着】【吃】【肉】【喝】【酒】，【谁】【曾】【想】【新】【郎】【已】【经】【魂】【归】【地】【府】，【杨】【万】【里】【一】【生】【作】【恶】【多】【端】，【终】【于】【落】【了】【如】【此】【下】【场】。 “【张】【家】【小】【姐】”【从】【长】【乐】【帮】【的】【围】【墙】【后】【面】【一】【跃】【而】【出】，【刚】【一】【落】【地】【就】【听】【见】【背】【后】【有】【人】【道】：
“【因】【为】【前】【几】【年】【并】【没】【有】【符】【合】【我】【们】【战】【略】【目】【标】【的】【明】【星】，【所】【以】，【我】【们】【也】【没】【有】【从】【内】【地】【挑】【选】，【而】【是】【挑】【选】【了】【周】【杰】【伦】，F4【这】【些】【港】【台】【明】【星】。” “【但】【是】，【现】【在】，【我】【发】【现】【了】【一】【件】【很】【有】【意】【思】【的】【事】【情】【那】【就】【是】【前】【段】【时】【间】【沸】【沸】【扬】【扬】【的】【社】【会】【热】【点】，【是】【因】【为】【一】【部】【电】【视】【剧】【而】【产】【生】【的】，【你】【们】【应】【该】【知】【道】【这】【意】【味】【着】【什】【么】【吧】？” 【现】【象】【级】！ 【史】【密】【斯】【和】【威】【尔】【两】【人】
【没】【有】【太】【多】【需】【要】【做】【的】【事】【情】，【只】【是】【想】【要】【回】【来】，【便】【就】【回】【来】【了】。 【这】【种】【弥】【漫】【在】【整】【个】【九】【月】【的】【初】【凉】【的】【感】【觉】。 【看】【着】【不】【远】【处】【那】【熟】【悉】【而】【又】【陌】【生】【的】【小】【区】，【秦】【音】【乃】【不】【由】【得】【深】【呼】【吸】【了】【一】【口】，【身】【子】【微】【微】【向】【前】【倾】【斜】【了】【一】【下】，【手】【里】【紧】【紧】【握】【着】【此】【次】【回】【来】【的】【行】【李】。 【一】【个】【手】【提】【包】。 【虽】【然】【只】【是】【离】【开】【了】【一】【个】【月】【左】【右】，【却】【仿】【佛】【离】【开】【了】【很】【久】【一】【般】，【本】【来】【对】【于】
【在】【汉】【阳】【城】【某】【个】【大】【厦】【的】【地】【下】【室】【里】。 【阴】【暗】【的】【灯】【光】【再】【加】【上】【不】【时】【传】【来】【的】【滴】【水】【声】【让】【这】【里】【显】【得】【更】【加】【的】【阴】【森】【恐】【怖】，【而】【此】【时】【金】【玉】【成】【就】【坐】【在】【里】【面】【的】【一】【把】【椅】【子】【上】。【金】【大】【海】【站】【在】【一】【旁】。 【而】【对】【面】【地】【上】【一】【个】【人】【倒】【在】【那】【里】，【一】【动】【不】【动】，【也】【不】【知】【死】【活】。 “【怎】【么】【样】【了】？”【金】【玉】【成】【开】【口】【问】【道】，【他】【刚】【刚】【来】【到】【这】【里】。 “【什】【么】【都】【没】【说】！”【金】【大】【海】【说】【道】百万高手论坛资料 百度云【非】【止】【一】【日】，【不】【死】【营】【进】【入】【邺】【城】。 【郭】【旭】【计】【划】【在】【这】【里】【停】【留】【一】【天】，【补】【充】【一】【些】【需】【要】【的】【东】【西】。【出】【了】【邺】【城】，【向】【北】【就】【要】【逐】【渐】【走】【出】【乞】【活】【军】【的】【控】【制】【范】【围】【了】。【也】【就】【是】【说】，【要】【随】【时】【准】【备】【厮】【杀】【了】。【特】【别】【是】【过】【了】【汲】【水】【之】【后】，【那】【就】【是】【王】【浚】【的】【控】【制】【范】【围】。【而】【且】，【王】【浚】【在】【汲】【水】【一】【带】【布】【置】【了】【重】【兵】，【肯】【定】【不】【会】【让】【郭】【旭】【他】【们】【轻】【易】【通】【过】。 【杨】【清】【风】、【允】【天】【机】【早】【就】【得】
【三】【人】【来】【自】【不】【同】【的】【三】【个】【家】【族】，【却】【又】【同】【气】【连】【枝】。 【只】【不】【过】，【他】【们】【这】【一】【系】【世】【空】，【已】【经】【沉】【沦】【了】【很】【多】【年】，【根】【本】【没】【出】【过】【象】【样】【的】【天】【才】。 【要】【再】【这】【么】【下】【去】，【万】【一】【那】【天】【他】【们】【老】【一】【辈】【损】【落】【了】，【那】【家】【族】【就】【彻】【底】【废】【了】。 【特】【别】【是】【这】【次】【经】【历】【了】【墓】【陵】【被】【困】【的】【事】【情】【之】【后】，【三】【人】【都】【是】【对】【招】【录】【新】【的】【天】【才】【加】【入】【家】【族】，【极】【为】【着】【急】。 【毕】【竟】，【被】【困】【在】【墓】【陵】【里】【的】
“【这】【里】【只】【怕】【是】【要】【沦】【为】【一】【片】【废】【土】【荒】【芜】【了】。” 【见】【到】【天】【权】【圣】【地】【十】【三】【长】【老】，【祭】【出】【那】“【天】【权】【王】【鼎】”，【一】【副】【要】【与】【在】【场】【诸】【多】【大】【人】【物】，【一】【起】【祭】【炼】“【先】【天】【圣】【器】”，**【那】【端】【木】【柔】【的】【画】【面】。【萧】【尘】【的】【第】【一】【反】【应】，【那】【就】【是】【离】【开】【这】【东】【苍】【废】【墟】！【之】【前】【那】“【天】【权】【王】【鼎】”，**【那】【些】【鬼】【将】【大】【军】【时】，【是】【摧】【枯】【拉】【朽】，【势】【不】【可】【挡】。 【可】【在】【萧】【尘】【看】【来】，【这】“【天】【权】
“【呵】……【多】【谢】！”【梨】【花】【冷】【笑】【一】【声】，【却】【是】【上】【前】【把】【扇】【贝】【又】【捡】【了】【起】【来】。 【对】【方】【离】【梨】【子】【实】【在】【是】【太】【近】【了】，【她】【必】【须】【防】【着】【点】，【手】【里】【有】【个】【锋】【利】【的】【武】【器】【最】【好】【不】【过】【了】。 【就】【在】【刚】【才】，【这】【个】【男】【人】【手】【里】【拿】【着】【一】【根】【棍】【子】，【作】【势】【要】【去】【敲】【击】【梨】【子】【的】【头】。【不】【管】【他】【是】【什】【么】【人】，【想】【要】【干】【什】【么】，【既】【然】【敢】【心】【怀】【不】【轨】，【那】【她】【就】【不】【客】【气】【的】【以】【牙】【还】【牙】【了】。 【男】【人】【的】【脸】【色】