Tim Henman feels Serena Williams is an outside contender for Wimbledon glory, but suggests it would be foolish to dismiss the 23-time major champion.
Williams has been sighted on court only twice since her withdrawal against Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the first round of last year’s Wimbledon.
A leg injury kept her out of last year’s US Open and this season’s Australian Open, while she elected to sidestep the French Open.
The pair won their first two matches, before being forced to pull out of the semi-finals due to an injury sustained by Jabeur.
Doubles encounters offered little insight into Williams’ fitness and form, and she has been largely dismissed by the bookmakers – with the 40-year-old freely available to back at 25/1.
Henman feels that is reflective of Williams’ chances at SW19, but that it would be folly to write off someone who has won Wimbledon on seven occasions.
“But I would put her down as an outsider, not one of the favourites at this stage.”
It will be a new-look set-up for Williams, as her long-term coach Patrick Mouratoglou is now working with Simona Halep.
The upheaval and time out with injuries could have prompted Williams to call time on her career, and Henman is impressed that the fire still burns bright.
“It’s amazing that she still has that hunger and desire and motivation to be competing,” Henman said. “I think for the spectators it would be brilliant to watch.”
Williams kicks off her quest for a 24th Grand Slam title against Harmony Tan of France on Monday.
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