The 2022 US Open is set to be a farewell to Serena Williams.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion, who turns 41 in September, says the “countdown has begun” as she looks ahead to life after tennis. Williams has the chance to equal Margaret Court’s all-time major record with victory at the US Open.
But along with Williams, which top tennis stars will be playing in New York and who will be missing?
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Venus Williams

It could be a double farewell in New York if Venus decides to join younger sister Serena in announcing her retirement.
Venus, 42, turned professional in 1994, a year before Serena, and played her first singles match in a year at the Citi Open in Washington DC earlier this month. Venus, whose last singles win was at Wimbledon 2021, has been given a wild card for the US Open.
Venus has not given any indication when she might retire, but earlier this year spoke in similar terms as Serena did recently when she said there’s a “light at the end of the tunnel”.
“From such a young age, all we’ve done is work,” Venus told Harper Bazaar. “So I think for Serena and I to explore that freedom is surreal. We’ve never been free.”
Seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus made the final on her first appearance at the US Open in 1997. She won the tournament in 2000 and 2001.

Serena Williams

Williams is set to play her last-ever tournament at the US Open.
The 40-year-old, who won her first singles match in 14 months at the Canadian Open, says she is "evolving away from tennis" and looks set to say goodbye in New York, where she is a six-time winner.
Williams has expressed a desire to have another child and also has business interests that she intends to pursue.
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“I don’t know if I will be ready to win New York,” Williams wrote in her farewell letter in Vogue.
“But I’m going to try...I know there’s a fan fantasy that I might have tied Margaret that day in London, then maybe beat her record in New York, and then at the trophy ceremony say, “See ya!” I get that. It’s a good fantasy. But I’m not looking for some ceremonial, final on-court moment. “I’m terrible at goodbyes, the world’s worst.”
Serena made the US Open semi-finals on her last appearance in 2020 and the final the previous two years. In the build-up to the tournament she won her first-round match in Toronto but lost to Emma Raducanu in Cincinnati.

Rafael Nadal

It’s unlikely to be farewell for Nadal this time around.
The Spaniard has had some of his best moments at the US Open in recent years, winning the tournament in 2017 and 2019 as well as making the semi-finals in 2018.
He will be targeting a record-extending 23rd major title this summer and could have the chance to return to No. 1 in the world rankings. Although he lost on his return to action after an abdominal injury at the Western & Southern Open he says he hopes more time on the practice court will lead to improvements.

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"You lose, you move forward. I know the way," he said. "The main thing for me is to stay healthy.
"It's difficult to take a lot of positive things, but I need to improve. I need to practise. I need to return better. I need days [on the court], and that's the truth."

Roger Federer

Federer hasn’t played the US Open since 2019, and he won’t be returning this summer. The 20-time Grand Slam champion has been out since Wimbledon 2021 after undergoing a third knee operation and only looks set to make his comeback at the Laver Cup in September.
Whether he plays the US Open again remains to be seen. He won the Slam five years in a row from 2004 to 2008 but his schedule next season, and potentially beyond, will depend on how his body holds up.

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Andy Murray

Murray made his big breakthrough at the 2012 US Open when he beat Novak Djokovic in the final to claim his first major title. Murray has not been back to the final since and has only won two matches in his last three appearances at the tournament.
He came close to a huge upset a year ago when he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas in the opening round after winning the first two sets.
Murray spoke at Wimbledon about wanting to be seeded for the US Open to avoid another tough draw, but his results over the last month have not seen him climb the rankings enough. He is ranked No. 47 in the world after early exits in Montreal and Cincinnati, and has struggled with cramping issues.

Novak Djokovic

The three-time champion might still have a chance to compete at the US Open.
Djokovic’s hopes of playing in New York were given a surprise late boost with the decision by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which is responsible for the health and safety of US residents, to relax rules regarding social distancing and quarantine. The CDC has not as yet updated its travel advice, which currently states that all non-US citizens and nationals must be fully vaccinated before entering the country, although its website does state that this is under review following the latest update.
Djokovic has been training on hard courts and recently posted an update saying he had "fingers crossed” hoping he would be able to make it to New York, where he lost in the final last year to Daniil Medvedev to end his Calendar Slam bid in crushing fashion.

Emma Raducanu

The 2021 US Open champion will be back to defend her title. Raducanu shocked the world when she came through qualifying a year ago and won her first Grand Slam without dropping a set.
Raducanu has not been able to back up the victory with more silverware yet and faces the prospect of falling down the rankings unless she can go deep again in New York. She will be defending 2040 points, the most ever by any player at a tournament (2000 for winning the tournament and 40 for coming through qualifying), and if she loses a chunk of that she will likely fall outside the top 50 or 60.

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Raducanu has shown some encouraging form with wins over Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka in Cincinnati before losing to Jessica Pegula.

Naomi Osaka

Two-time champion Osaka has not enjoyed the best preparation for the US Open.
She retired during her first-round match against Kaia Kanepi in Toronto with a back injury and then seemed to be off the pace as she lost to Zhang Shuai in Cincinnati.
“Naomi she is amazing but I don’t know she is maybe not really feeling good today,” said Zhang after her straight-sets win. “But for sure today - not her best today.”
Osaka won the US Open in 2018 and 2020.

Alexander Zverev

World No. 2 Zverev will not play the US Open due to an ankle injury.
Zverev hasn’t played since leaving the court in a wheelchair after tearing ankle ligaments in his French Open semi-final against Rafael Nadal.
The German had played 27 consecutive Grand Slams since his 2015 debut before this injury also forced him out of Wimbledon.
Zverev was in with a chance of becoming world No. 1 for the first time at the French Open but is now set to slip down as he won't be able to defend his US Open semi-final points from last year.

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Coco Gauff

Gauff's hopes of playing her home Grand Slam appear to be in doubt after she retired from her first-round match against Marie Bouzkova in Cincinnati with an ankle injury.
The world No. 12 seemingly downplayed the issue in a post on Twitter, saying: "I have gotten tons of really nice messages of concern. I promise I am ok! The world is not ending lol!
"I have been told it is most likely a really minor sprain so everything should be healed soon."
Gauff has not yet made it played the third round in New York and will likely be playing doubles too after recently ascending to the top of the world rankings.

Simona Halep

After winning her biggest title in two years in Toronto, Halep withdrew from the Western & Southern Open ahead of her clash with Veronika Kudermetova due to a thigh injury.
It is not known whether the world No. 6, who has previously made the semi-finals in New York, will be fit for the final Grand Slam of the season.

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Dominic Thiem

It's been a rough 12 months for the 2020 US Open champion, who has been working his way back after a wrist injury.
Thiem showed some encouraging signs on clay in July and is set to return for the Winston-Salem Open, which starts on August 22, after not playing either Montreal or Cincinatti. He has been given a wild card for the US Open.

Gael Monfils

The former US Open semi-finalist will not be returning this summer due to an injury suffered in Montreal.
Monfils wrote on Twitter: "Following the latest medical exams that I took upon returning in Europe, I will sadly not be able to play at the US Open this year. I am forced to undergo a new period of treatment before being able to resume tournaments.”

Reilly Opelka

The big-serving American, whose last match was defeat to Nick Kyrgios in Washington DC in early August, has withrawn from the US Open.

Jennifer Brady

Brady made the semi-finals at the US Open in 2020 and the final of the 2021 Australian Open but hasn't played in over a year due to injury. She does not look set to return in time for the US Open.
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