The Ariake Tennis Park is ready to receive the best tennis players in the world, who will be looking for gold in Tokyo 2020. However, some of the biggest names in the white sport won’t be playing at the Olympics, such as American legend Serena Williams. Here, check out why she won’t be competing. 

Williams, however, is not a stranger to Olympic glory. The 23-time Grand Slam champion also won gold in singles at the 2012 London Games. Also, with her sister Venus, she is a three-gold medalist in doubles (2000, 2008, and 2012). 

As the 16th player in the world rankings, Williams was qualified to play in the Olympics with team USA. But she said she wasn’t going to the Games in Tokyo. It’s the second time in her career that she’s going to miss the Olympics, as she couldn’t compete in Athens 2004 due to an injury. 

Why Serena Williams isn’t playing in Tokyo 2020? 

Williams announced her decision to not play in the Olympics during her brief participation in Wimbledon 2021. In a press conference before her first round match at the Championships, the American player confirmed her absence. 

“I'm actually not on the Olympic list - not that I'm aware of. If so, then I shouldn't be on it,” she said. “There's a lot of reasons that I made my Olympic decision. I don't feel like going into them today. Maybe another day. Sorry.”, she added. 

As her decision was made prior to Wimbledon, it didn’t have correlation with the injury she suffered in her first round match against Aliaksandra Sasnóvich. She had to retire with the score 3-3 in the first set after she slipped and bent her ankle.