Caroline Wozniacki and co court shocks before Serena Williams’ expected return

Simona Halep, Maria Sharapova and others seem set to ensure when the winner of 23 grand slams rejoins the WTA Tour it will be anything but dull

When Serena Williams returns to tennis as expected in the new year, with a baby daughter, Alexis, in her entourage and a spring in her 36-year-old step, the remarkable American will find the game in a state of pleasing but predictable flux.

There is still plenty to play for, not least the prospect of her surpassing Margaret Court as the most decorated player in the history of her sport – men’s or women’s, as Andy Murray might remind us – and, if Melbourne comes too soon for Williams to pull alongside the Australian’s tally of 24 slams, there should be time enough for her to do so later in the year. She has been hugely missed.

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