Before stepping on the competitive tennis courts of the inaugural Dongfeng Motor Wuhan Open, Serena Williams made up for her lack of practice ahead of this Premier-level $2,440,070 event by challenging the Mayor of Wuhan and young tennis players in a cruise ship tennis exhibition.
The exhibition was played on the Yangtze River with a stunning view of the metropolis.
After a first-round bye, Serena’s first opponent in Li Na’s birthplace will be Alize Cornet. It will be their third meeting this year and Cornet will try to beat the American for the third straight time, after Dubai and Wimbledon. Cornet played the finals of Guangzhou last week both in singles and doubles and is probably exhausted.
UPDATE: The top-seeded Williams retired during the final stage of the first set against Cornet, citing a viral illness. Cornet is now the first player since Justine Henin in 2007 to beat Serena three times in a single season.