"It is better to take a bit more time, and when you come back to the competition, you are ready to be yourself - win or lose is another thing - but at least be yourself and be at the top of what you can do". This was her 23rd Grand Slam singles title, surpassing Steffi Graf's Open Era record of 22. "With that being said I am disappointed to say I've decided not to compete in The Australian Open this year".
The 23-time Grand Slam victor played her first match since giving birth at the World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi on December 30, losing her exhibition match to reigning French Open Champion Jelena Ostapenko.
Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley said: "The true champion Serena is has been demonstrated in the herculean efforts she has made over the past few months in her desire to play the Australian Open".
On Thursday, Britain's Andy Murray pulled out of the tournament, which starts on 15 January. "I appreciate the support and understanding of my fans and everyone at the Australian Open".
Williams' absence, while disappointing for fans and officials, raises the prospect of another first-time grand slam victor making their mark in Melbourne.
Jon Gruden Expected To Become Head Coach Of Raiders
Del Rio became head coach in January 2015 and won 25 games and lost 23 in three seasons, including a 6-10 season this year. But, it's a results business. "I appreciate the players and coaches and all the hard work, all the effort and energy".
On Thursday, men's world number 22 Kei Nishikori withdrew because of a wrist injury.
Russell Fuller, BBC tennis correspondent It is less than four months since Williams gave birth.
Despite the fact that Williams has turned down a wildcard for one of the last warm-up tournaments before the tournament begins, Tiley apparently remains fairly sure that the American will be back to defend her title.
Williams might be "super close" but she doesn't yet think she is in championship-winning shape.