Serena Williams out of Eastbourne after partner Ons Jabeur suffers a right knee injury ahead of their semi-finals clash with Aleksandra Krunic and Magda Linette later on Thursday

Last Updated: 23/06/22 11:42am

Serena Williams will now concentrate on preparing for Wimbledon after her doubles partner Ons Jabeur suffered a right knee injury ahead of their semi-final in Eastbourne

Serena Williams will now concentrate on preparing for Wimbledon after her doubles partner Ons Jabeur suffered a right knee injury ahead of their semi-final in Eastbourne

Serena Williams has been forced to withdraw from her Eastbourne semi-finals later on Thursday after doubles partner Ons Jabeur suffered a right knee injury.

Williams, 40, will now concentrate on preparing for Wimbledon, where she has been awarded a wild card.

When Williams announced a shock return to tennis on June 14, it put an end to retirement rumours after long-term coach Patrick Mouratoglou started to work with Simona Halep earlier this year.

A wild card entry into the doubles at Eastbourne was agreed to give the seven-time Wimbledon champion some match practice before she begins her latest pursuit of a 24th Grand Slam title.

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The American has played her first two competitive matches at the Rothesay International since limping out of Wimbledon in tears last summer with a hamstring problem.

Williams (left) and Ons Jabeur nicknamed their team 'Onserena'

Williams (left) and Ons Jabeur nicknamed their team ‘Onserena’

Williams and Ons Jabeur made it through to the semi-finals with a narrow victory over Maria Bouzkova and Sara Sorribes Tormo and then a more convincing one against Shuko Aoyama and Chan Hao-ching.

Tunisian Jabeur, ranked third in the world in singles, has injured her right knee, the LTA confirmed in a social media post.

Speaking after Wednesday’s match, Williams said: “I feel good, as good as one can feel after having such a long time off. I was telling Ons, this was a really good match and the second set in particular, they played really well, but we were able to just play different circumstances.

“It was actually good match play and match practice, which is exactly what I needed and what I wanted to do coming here, so I couldn’t have asked for more.”

Williams, who is unseeded at Wimbledon, will find out who she faces in the first round when the draw is made on Friday morning.

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