Serena Williams will begin her bid for an eighth Wimbledon title as the 25th seed after being handed a discretional promotion by the All England Club.
The 36-year-old is ranked world No 183 as she continues her comeback from giving birth to her first child last year but Wimbledon officials have discretion to seed a player regardless of ranking and are understood to have come to a decision at a meeting on Tuesday.
Williams, who holds an Open-era record of 23 Grand Slam victories, made her competitive return to the game in March at Indian Wells before an encouraging run to the French Open fourth round was ended by a right pectoral injury.
Dominika Cibulkova is the player to miss out on a place in the top-32 seeds as a result of the decision and the Slovakian player made clear her feelings about the issue to the media on Tuesday.
“Why should I not be seeded if I have the right to be?” asked Cibulkova, who is ranked No 32, after her defeat to Angelique Kerber at the Nature Valley International in Eastbourne.
“It would be different if I was No 6 seed and they put me at No 10, you know,” added Cibulkova, whose own ranking peaked at No 4 in 2014.
“But it’s just not fair if there is a player [who misses out] and it’s me now. I have the right and I should be seeded and if they put her in front of me then I will just lose my spot that I am supposed to have. I don’t know if something like this ever happened before.”
More to follow…
We will keep you up to date with all the news ahead of Wimbledon including our live blogs once the action gets underway on July 2.
Our next tennis action comes from the German Open in Hamburg. Watch the action live on Sky Sports Arena from Monday, July 23 from 10am.
Never miss the big kick-off or have to deal with interrupted games or low quality streams with a NOW TV Sky Sports Pass this summer. You’ll get exclusive coverage of the 147th Open from Carnoustie, The Ryder Cup, ATP Tour, World Darts Matchplay, and loads more starting from just £7.99. No contract.