Serena Williams confirms she won't play Australian Open; Novak Djokovic among men's entries


Serena finishes the race.

Pam Shriver is on the sidelines as Serena Williams crosses the finish line for the 5K race. (0:18)

1:45 AM.

Serena Williams will not play in the Australian Open in the year's opening major, she confirmed after her name was not on the entry list.

Williams hasn't played since she retired from her first-round match at Wimbledon with a right leg injury. She won the last of her 23 Grand Slam singles titles at the Australian Open, but was beaten in the semifinals by Naomi Osaka.

The Australian Open's website said that seven-time women's singles champion would not compete in the event because of advice from her medical team.

Williams told the website that he was not where he needed to be to compete. One of my favorite cities to visit is Melbourne, and I look forward to playing at the AO every year. I am excited to return and compete at my highest level, but I will miss the fans.

The men's entry list shows that Novak Djokovic will be playing in the Australian Open, despite Australia's strict regulations requiring all players, officials and fans to be fully vaccined against COVID-19.

Although he was included last week on the Serbian team for the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic has not commented on his vaccine status.

The men's record of 20 Grand Slam singles titles is tied with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. The Australian Open will have both Nadal and Federer entered, but the Swiss star is skipping the event to recover from knee surgery.

The top five players in the world are listed above, including the one who ended Novak Djokovic's bid for a calendar-year Grand Slam at the US Open.

Ash Barty is the top women's entry list and she is trying to end a long wait for Australian women at the tournament. Chris O'Neil won the singles title in 1978.

Defending champion Osaka is listed in 13th place.