Tennis superstar Serena Williams announced on Sunday that she would not be attending the Tokyo Olympics.
“In fact, I’m not on the Olympic list – not to my knowledge. And if so, I shouldn’t be on it,” Williams told reporters at a press conference ahead of Wimbledon after having been questioned.
Williams, who is a four-time Olympic gold medalist, did not explain why she did not plan to attend.
When asked to explain why she wasn’t playing at the Olympics – and if it had anything to do with her 3-year-old daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., couldn’t have come with her because of Covid -19 restrictions – she declined to elaborate.
“There are a lot of reasons why I made my Olympic decision and I don’t feel like going into them today,” she said. “Maybe another day. Sorry.”
In previous Summer Games, Williams won gold for the United States in singles and doubles at the 2012 London Olympics, doubles at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Her doubles gold medals were all shared with her older sister Venus.
Williams made the announcement the day before the main draw at the prestigious London tournament begins, where she will try to win her 24th Grand Slam singles title.
Williams said she hadn’t thought about what it would be like not to compete in the Olympics this year.
” I did not think about it. In the past it was a wonderful place for me. I really haven’t thought about it, so I’m going to continue not to think about it.
Williams is not the only tennis player not to participate in the Olympics. Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem have also said they will not attend the Olympics. Roger Federer said on Saturday that he had not yet decided whether or not he planned to go to Tokyo.
The Olympics open on July 23 in Tokyo after being postponed due to Covid-19. NBC Universal, the parent company of NBC News, owns the US media rights to the upcoming Olympics.
The Associated Press contributed.