Serena Williams to return to French Open as unseeded player

Not seeding Serena in wrong — Evert

Current rules covering maternity leave and injuries allow a protected or "special" ranking to be utilized for entry into tournaments but not for seeding purposes regardless of the reason for a player's absence.

3rd Round. a. Ostapenko was the first woman in almost four decades to make a Grand Slam title the first tour-level triumph of her career.

Semifinal. e. Evert won 15 of her 18 major championships in that span, including five of her seven French Open trophies.

Williams may not be getting treated like a top player by tournament organizers, but as she wryly noted Monday on Twitter, other tennis-related officials still seem to be recognizing her elite status.

Williams is in the top half of the draw, which is led by No. 1 seed Simona Halep.

Even longtime rival Maria Sharapova said last week at the Italian Open that she'd like to see the rules change.

"Right now, the next few days, I won't even think about tennis".

She said not being the defending champion this year will help her adopt a more relaxed approach.

The New Daily took Williams' case to a series of experts around Australia and they sided with the 36-year-old.

"If a woman takes 12 months maternity leave in a workplace, the law allows her to return to the same position", she said.

Fresh off attending the royal wedding on Saturday, Williams receives this limited edition of the Blazer Mid before she returns to the court.

"Tennis is such a selfish sport but I think when there's a child in your life you lose a little bit of that, because there's something that's so much more important", added Sharapova, who has lost three Grand Slam finals to Williams.

"It is one of the inherent disadvantages built into child bearing".

"Serena clearly came back too early". "She had a kid, which we should all be celebrating, so when she comes back there should be a grace period where she can still be seeded". Her sister, Venus Williams, sits at No. 9 in the world.

"Women after giving birth are often/usually stronger, psychologically as well as physically, than before", she said. There is a possibility that Williams can enter the tournament seeded under a special WTA rule but that would depend on whether the FTF makes an exception for the American.

The No. 1 player in the WTA World Rankings will face stiff competition from Elina Svitolina, who beat the Romanian in straight sets in the final in Rome.

However, being seeded gives a player a number of advantages. Will Williams return from maternity leave to claim a record-equaling 24th grand slam and can Rafael Nadal win an unprecedented 11th French Open crown? "The rule is now under further review as part of our 2019 rules process".

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