20-time Wimbledon champion Martina Navratilova was highly critical about world No. 1 Serena Williams‘ retirement from the doubles contest on Tuesday afternoon. The American, who did not appear fit to walk, let alone play tennis, managed all of three games with her sister Venus before she retired from the contest after serving four consecutive double faults.
“I find it distressing,” Martina Navratilova told ESPN. “I think virus, whatever they’re saying it was, I don’t think that was it. I think it’s clear that’s not the case. I don’t know what it is, but I hope Serena will be okay and most of all, I don’t know how she ended up walking onto the court.”
Williams was given a blood pressure test by medical staff before the doubles match against Kristina Barrois and Stefanie Voegele but it was eminently clear that she was not up to par as she warmed up for the contest. She could barely keep the ball in play during practice and remained seated for a good portion of the time before the contest.
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“It’s the most inexplicable thing of all that she was clearly in no state to play a match and that with all the people around her that they didn’t stop her from getting on the court,
“I’ve never seen anything like it and hopefully never will again,” Navratilova said. “Everybody was put in such a difficult position, including the WTA. It’s not right. It defies logic on so many fronts. The coach said he hadn’t seen her for two days. He didn’t know anything. How can you be a coach and not know anything? That’s wrong. And Venus was just kind of there. You don’t know what’s going on, but virus was not it, that much is clear.”