LONDON — Serena Williams staggered out of here Tuesday, because of what her sister Venus proclaimed was a viral bug, and now the question remains whether Serena will fulfill her commitment to play next week in the Swedish Open.
According to a USA Today account in the wake of Serena’s abrupt departure, the star’s half-sister, Isha Price, said Serena did not appear ill before the doubles match she played (albeit ever so briefly) on Tuesday.
“She seemed emotional, sad,’’ Price said, “you know what I mean?’’
According to The Daily Mail, the London tabloid, a courtside examination of the crying Williams on Tuesday found her pulse, blood pressure, and temperature all to be within expected or normal ranges.
“The strangest 15 minutes I’ve ever seen on a tennis court,’’ offered former US star Tracy Austin. “Without a doubt.’’
Williams, who will be 33 in September, was examined courtside and appeared lethargic, even dazed, as a female doctor spoke with her and measured her vitals.
“Obviously,’’ said Sue Barker, the longtime BBC host, “she was in a lot of stress.’’
The USA Today report also included a comment from Serena’s coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, saying that prior to the doubles match he had not seen her since her loss here Saturday in singles to Alize Cornet. “Before the match, she was fine,’’ he said.
Following the loss to Cornet, Serena sounded less than enthused with the prospect of playing in the doubles competition, noting, “I suck right now at doubles. I told Venus that I am so bad that I don’t even want to play.’’
Novak Djokovic will take on Grigor Dimitrov Saturday (8 a.m.) in the first of two men’s semifinal matches. Djokovic is the No. 1 seed and still the favorite to win, despite the smooth play (per usual) of Swiss master Roger Federer.
Federer will face Canada’s Milos Raonic, a first-time Slams semifinalist, in an attempt to win Wimbledon for a record eighth time. Federer remains tied at seven with 19th-century legend William Renshaw and Pete Sampras.
Federer, rarely one to say anything controversial, earlier this week voiced his displeasure over the Lords of Wimbledon being so strict about the all-white dress code.
“I respect it and understand,’’ said the artful Roger. “Maybe one day they’ll loosen up the grip a bit . . . that’s just the time we’re going through.”
The club adheres to a 10-point clothing policy that calls for “suitable tennis attire that is almost entirely white.’’
“We’re all white . . . white, white, white,’’ said Federer. “Full on white. I think it’s too strict.
“If you look at the pictures of Stefan Edberg and Boris Becker, there was some color [then], but it was still ‘all white.’ ’’