PARIS, France, Apr 24 – US tennis star Serena Williams returned to the world number one spot in the latest WTA rankings released on Monday, days after announcing her pregnancy.
The 35-year-old moved up one place during a week dedicated to Fed Cup action ahead of Germany’s Angelique Kerber with Czech Karolina Pliskova holding third spot.
Williams, one of the greatest players of all time, revealed Wednesday that she is expecting her first baby and will not play again this year.
Kelly Bush Novak, Williams’ publicist, said this week that she “looks forward to returning in 2018” and that was echoed by her coach Patrick Mouratoglou.
Overtaking Australia’s Margaret Court for the all-time record of 24 Grand Slam singles crowns — Williams is on 23 — is also “a determining factor” in her motivation to plough on, the Frenchman said.
Williams is due to give birth in September.
-Nadal up to fifth-
At the same time, Rafael Nadal moved up to fifth in the latest rankings a day after claiming a record 10th Monte Carlo title.
Spain’s 30-year-old king of clay won his 50th trophy on his favourite surface, his 70th overall and his first title in almost a year as he beat compatriot Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-1, 6-3 in just 76 minutes.
Ramos-Vinolas, 29, who had upset number one Andy Murray and Marin Cilic in the best run of his career, moved up five places to a career-high 19th.
Britain’s Murray remains top ahead of Serb Novak Djokovic and Swiss Stan Wawrinka, who were all early casualties in Monte Carlo.