Serena Williams pulls out of Italian Open with knee injury

Serena Williams withdraws from Rome with ongoing left knee injury

This is not the first time this year that Williams has withdrawn from a tournament.

It's the third straight tournament the 37-year-old Serena has exited from due to physical problems.

Her withdrawal sends Venus Williams, the 1999 victor, through to a third-round meeting with either Johanna Konta of Britain or American seventh seed Sloane Stephens.

Why did Serena Williams withdraw from Italian Open?

Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki retired from her first-round match at the Italian Open because of a leg injury.

In March, she withdrew before the third round of the Miami Open due to the same issue with her left knee, and...

Williams took almost two months off after withdrawing ahead of the second round in Miami in March, also with a knee problem. Williams made it to the fourth round previous year at the French Open, her first grand slam since giving birth, with a pectoral injury.

She trailed 3-0 against Alize Cornet in the opening round of the Madrid Open earlier this month before pulling out with a back injury.

Williams, now ranked 11th, made her Grand Slam return in Paris 12 months ago following the birth of her daughter.

The French Open gets underway on May 26.

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