Wuhan (China): Top seed Serena Williams had to be helped off the court as she retired ill during her first set at the inaugural Wuhan Open in China yesterday.
Serena is in obvious discomfort during the match. Pics/AFP
The World No 1 had her temperature and blood pressure checked before retiring while 6-5 up against France's Alize Cornet, after just over an hour on court. It brought an abrupt end to Williams' first match since she won her 18th Grand Slam title at the US Open in New York two weeks ago.
"I'm sorry to all the fans in Wuhan that I had to retire from my match against Alize today. I felt dizzy and nauseous in the first set and unfortunately couldn't continue.
Medics record Serena's blood pressure level on court during her match against France's Alize Cornet at the Wuhan Open in China yesterday.
The tournament organisers have done an amazing job preparing the facilities for this year's event and I really hope to come back to the Wuhan Open in 2015," Serena later said.
This is not the first time Williams' illness has made the headlines. In July, She made a troubled exit from a second-round doubles match at Wimbledon with sister Venus in July, later saying that she suffered a viral that had left her bedridden for three days and would need to undergo further medical tests.
Williams' elder sister Venus suffers from the energy-sapping autoimmune disease Sjogren's syndrome. In 2011, Serena was hospitalised with blood clots and a hematoma that was surgically removed.