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Shock defeat for Williams at tennis's Auckland Classic

media Serena Williams Reuters/Andrew Kelly

Serena Williams suffered a surprise second-round defeat at the Auckland Classic Wednesday. Top-seeded Serena blamed the wind for a string of unforced errors in her first event after a four-month layoff as she was sent packing 6-4, 6-7 (7/3), 6-4 in a two-hour, 14-minute contest with world number 72 Madison Brengle.

"I'm trying to think of a word that's not obscene but that's pretty much how I played," Serena told reporters.

"I just couldn't get used to the wind. My opponent played in the exact same conditions so obviously she was used to it and her game was more suited to it but it was just really annoying me for whatever reason."

Meanwhile, Serena’s sister Venus, who was the second seed, decided to quit after suffering a painful right arm during match against 18 year old Jade Lewis from New Zealand. She won the match 7-6 (7/2), 6-2 but decided to call it quits.

Serena, playing in her first tournament since losing in the semi-finals of the US Open in September, hoped to grab the Auckland title in the run-up to the Australian Open that starts later this month in Melbourne.

A jubilant Brengle now goes through to meet seventh seed Jelena Ostapenko in the quarter-finals.

The withdrawal of Venus Williams means that the talented Japanese teenager Naomi Osaka will come out in the final eight where she will play eighth-seed Croatian Ana Konjuh.

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