Defending champion Williams, 36, gave birth to her daughter Alexa in September and married Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian in a star-studded New Orleans wedding in November. Last week Williams' coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, told CNN Sport that a decision would be made during an upcoming training session in Florida on whether or not the 23-time grand slam champion would make her comeback and compete in Melbourne, where play starts on January 15. Follow @cnnsportREAD: Serena's coach on Australian Open READ: People think I'm mean because I'm black – Williams READ: What's it like coaching Serena Williams? However, at a Tennis Australia event on Wednesday, the Australian Open's tournament director, Craig Tiley, was optimistic of Williams defending her Melbourne title and continuing in her quest to break Margaret Court's all-time singles record of 24 grand slams. "She has got her visa, she has entered, she's practicing, and she probably just needs a bit more space for a bigger entourage," Tiley told reporters. "There is no question she will be ready in our view."She wants to break the record owned by Margaret Court and it would be a significant accomplishment for her to be able to do that."Go to CNN.com/sport for more stories & featuresCurrently ranked No.22 in the world, Williams told CNN in July she was intending to return to tennis — echoing the words of her spokespeople — and if the American does show up in Melbourne, it would come about four-and-a-half months after she gave birth.The American won this year's Australian Open in the early stages of pregnancy and then stepped away from the game.
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March 27, 2018