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Venus to end 15-year boycott of Indian Wells

Venus to end 15-year boycott of Indian Wells

Johannesburg : American tennis ace Venus Williams has decided to follow in the footsteps of her younger sister Serena by making a return to next week’s BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells.

The 35-year-old, who will end her 15-year boycott, has last played in the prestigious Californian event in 2001, when she withdrew from a semi-final clash against world number one due to a knee injury.

The duo were also booed by the crowd and their family received a flurry of racial slurs after the withdrawal. Venus insisted that the criticism directed towards her had left a lasting mark.

Recalling the incident, Venus said that she eagerly wanted to play in the semifinals against her sister, but added that she failed to do so because of her injury, Sport24 reported.

Venus said that she had decided to return to the tournament after Serena, who also ended her boycott last year, received a warm reception at Indian Wells.

Serena had received a 57-second standing ovation from the spectators before her opening match on Stadium Court.

The Paribas Open is scheduled to be held from March 9 to March 20. (ANI)