The wait is over. After sitting out almost all of the 2017 season to have her first child, Serena Williams is launching her comeback in earnest with an exhibition match against Roland Garros champion Jelena Ostapenko on Dec. 30.
The match will take place during the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi, marking the first time women have participated in the annual men's exhibition tournament.
"I am delighted to be returning to the court for the first time since the birth of my daughter in September," said Williams in a statement. "I am excited and honored to be making my comeback as part of the first women to participate in the event."
Williams, currently No. 22 in the WTA rankings, is also on the entry list for the 2018 Australian Open. Tournament director Craig Tiley said she is "very likely" to defend her title in Melbourne when the tournament starts on Jan. 15.