This content was published 8 years ago. It may refer to a past edition of the Internazionali d’Italia.
Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Internazionali BNL d’Italia with Christina McHale, the qualifier, receiving a walkover to the quarter-finals.
Williams was due to play on Grandstand court on Thursday afternoon but cited a right elbow injury as reason for opting to miss the match.
“It was not an easy decision, I talked to my coach who said it would not be a smart thing to play,” she said. “I hate quitting. But this is not quitting, it’s just making a better decision.
“I had a good opportunity to get far in the tournament but it was a mature decision. 90 per cent of the decision was experience.
“My elbow injury started in Madrid, I was not serving with my hardest. I have to be able to hit my shots with a lot of confidence and when you’re injured you do not have that much confidence. It’s so important to have that in any match.
“I don’t think it will impact me in Paris. If I continue to play it will and I could have a situation on my hands and could impact my chances at Roland Garros and Wimbledon.”
Serena is a three-times winner in Rome having won in 2002, 2013 and 2014 and adds that it was a wrench to withdraw.
“I love playing in Rome and have a lot of friends here,” she said. “Pulling out is not fun but everyone is adult and understands the importance of someone doing the best they can at this stage of their career. It is nothing personal.”