Serena Williams told a pre-tournament press conference that she took time out of the game to "heal physically and mentally".
Williams is aiming for an eighth Wimbledon singles title after making the shock announcement two weeks ago that she would be returning at the third major of the season.
The 40-year-old withdrew injured against Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the first round of last year’s Wimbledon, and in a pre-tournament press conference ahead of Wimbledon, the 23-time Grand Slam champion clarified that she never retired.
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"I didn't retire,” said Williams. “I just needed to heal physically and mentally.”
Williams added that she had not specifically planned to return at Wimbledon, but that timings worked out well.
After confirming she was taking a Wimbledon wild card, she returned to court alongside Ons Jabeur in the doubles at the Eastbourne International. That venture would be cut short though ahead of the semi-finals owing to an injury to Jabeur.
“I had no plans to be honest,” added Williams.
“I just didn't know when I would come back. How I would come back. Wimbledon is such a great place to be and it just worked out."
Williams also said that she was rooting for Rafael Nadal, who heads to Wimbledon nursing a chronic foot injury, but gunning for a Calendar Slam
"He's done a lot in 2022,” said Williams of Nadal, who has won the Australian and French Opens this year.
“He's been busy. I've always been a Rafa fan. I named my dog after him. He's so cute. I miss the little guy.
“I am always rooting for Rafa. He's been really inspiring in everything he's done this year and he has a lot more to do."
Williams starts her Wimbledon campaign on Monday against Harmony Tan of France while Rafael Nadal will face Francisco Cerundolo on Tuesday.
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Watch daily highlights from Wimbledon at 10pm on Eurosport 2 and discovery+ from June 27, as well as the two singles finals live on July 9 and 10.
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