Petra Kvitova makes emotional Fed Cup return, pays tribute to Jana Novotna

Fed Cup- Draws Serena Williams won't play singles

Fed Cup- Draws Serena Williams won't play singles

But Williams, whose triumph in Melbourne a year ago gave her an Open-era record 23rd grand slam - one shy of the all-time record held by Australian Margaret Court - still has a desire to compete in tennis's blue riband events.

"It's never a win until it's over", she said.

When neither Williams sister played in the Fed Cup past year, Vandeweghe led the U.S.to its 2017 title by going 6-0 in singles matches and 2-0 in doubles.

Williams, entering a competitive event unranked for the first time since 1997, heads a powerful USA team that include her 37-year-old sister Venus, the world No. 8, world No. 17 CoCo Vandeweghe as well as world No. 62 Lauren Davis.

The 37-year-old, who enjoyed a renaissance year in 2017 when she reached two Grand Slam finals, showed some signs of tiring towards the end of the second set even as her clear advantage in skill and raw power were on display.

"I'm really happy but it is definitely the start of a long process", Former world No.1 Serena Williams said in a press conference. "Right now I'm focused on this weekend and after that I'll figure out what it might be". It's always a sense of pride you take on the court besides playing for yourself.

The 36-year-old Williams - who had a daughter, Alexis, on September 1 last year - has not played a Women's Tennis Association (WTA) tournament since she achieved an Open-era record 23rd Grand Slam singles title at the Australian Open in January 2017, skipping defending her title last month due to concerns over her fitness.


Venus Williams and CoCo Vandeweghe won the opening singles matches to give holders the United States a commanding 2-0 lead in their Fed Cup World Group opener against the Netherlands in Asheville, North Carolina on Saturday.

Earlier in the day, Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic made a tearful return to the Fed Cup, admitting her team's 2-0 lead over Switzerland in Prague had been inspired by a moving tribute to fellow All England Club champion Jana Novotna. They gave the 23-time Grand Slam victor a standing ovation before matchups were picked for this weekend's Fed Cup featuring the defending champion United States team and the Netherlands.

Also credited for a newfound sense of zen was her family life with baby Alexis and husband Alexis Ohanian, the co-founder of Reddit whom she Wednesday in November.

"I'm really excited for her (that she gets to be a ball kid)", Serena said. "It's just great to play the game that I love".

'It's a quick turnaround after having her first child.

Venus Williams was asked how motherhood had changed her sister. "I think that today's match hopefully will help me for tomorrow". "She's been really, really positive", she said.

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