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Winning return for Venus

Venus Williams marked her return from an abdominal injury with an impressive 7-5, 5-7, 6-3 victory over Germany's Andrea Petkovic at the Eastbourne championships on Monday.

sports Updated: Jun 13, 2011 22:59 IST

Venus Williams marked her return from an abdominal injury with an impressive 7-5, 5-7, 6-3 victory over Germany's Andrea Petkovic at the Eastbourne championships on Monday.

The five-time Wimbledon champion, playing her first match since January's Australian Open third round when she retired after one game also against Petkovic, looked completely at home on the slick grasscourts.

Despite opening the contest with two double-faults in difficult windy conditions on the southern English coast, she battled back from a break down to take the opening set.

Neither Venus nor sister Serena, who will return here after a year out with injury and a life-threatening illness, are seeded at the traditional Wimbledon warm-up.

Venus has not played at Eastbourne since she came through the qualifying rounds in 1997 while Serena made her only appearance a year later.