VIDEO: Victoria Azarenka has kind words for Serena Williams after pregnancy announcement
Azarenka makes a return to tennis seven months after the birth of her son, Leo.
Former World No. 1 Serena Williams, who will return to that ranking on Monday, the 24th of April, announced yesterday in a post to her Snapchat that she was 20 weeks into being pregnant with her first child.
Among several tennis champions congratulating Williams was her co-former No. 1 Victoria Azarenka, herself a new mother. Belarusian ace Azarenka gave birth to her first child, son Leo, with partner Billy McKeague, in December of 2016.
Azarenka announced last month that she was aiming to return during the 2017 hard court season, and is currently in intensive practice; the two-time Australian Open championship described motherhood as the “best that ever happened to her,” and in an interview profusely congratulated Williams on her impending joy.
In the interview, Azarenka said she was “really, really happy for her!”, and so happy to see her personal life is so stable. She is going to be so, so happy!” Wishing one of her biggest rivals luck with the pregnancy, ‘Vika’, as she is popularly known, said she would miss the dynamic Williams on the court and she was eagerly awaiting the American’s return.
Azarenka and Williams have played 21 matches against each other, with Williams leading that race overwhelmingly with 14 wins over her Belarusian rival.
Like Azarenka, Williams has also announced a return soon after the birth of her child, with the American 23-Major winner’s representative saying in a statement that Williams would return for the 2018 season.
At 35, Serena Williams is the oldest Grand Slam winner of all time, and with her Australian Open win this year – her 23rd major title, which we now know she won while she was eight weeks pregnant, she is only one title away from the all-time record set by Australian Margaret Court.
Incidentally, Azarenka was also pregnant when she won the Sunshine Double (the combination of titles at Indian Wells and Miami) in 2016.
Williams will not play tennis for the remainder of the 2017 season.