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Caroline Wozniacki transfixed us in a final for the ages

Despite Serena Williams’s absence, the women’s draw provided more excitement than the men’s

With close friend Caroline Wozniacki competing for her maiden grand slam, seven-time Australian Open champion Serena Williams went to bed, “too nervous to watch”. This is not the first time Williams has publicly admitted to “turning the channel” on a tournament she has made her own, but this time the inference could not have been more different. The irony is that in this case Williams missed a classic; an epic all the more impressive given her sizeable absence.

After all, publicity for the 2018 women’s draw began with Craig Tiley doing his best to hype Williams’ possible return, at one point promising there was “no question” she would be back, despite the fact that Williams was reportedly bedridden for six weeks following an emergency C section. In their enthusiasm to hype Williams’s unlikely return, one wondered if Tennis Australia prescribed to the notion that no Williams was equivalent of no Australian Open – at least from a women’s perspective.

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