Serena Williams will not be seeded at the French Open as she returns after giving birth.
The three-time French Open champion, is expected to play in her first Grand Slam since giving birth to her daughter in September.
She was No.1 when she left the tour to give birth but is currently ranked No.453.
And tournament organisers announced on Monday they will not give Williams, 36, a seeding.
Current rules covering maternity leave and injuries allow a protected or “special” ranking to be used for entry into tournaments but not for seeding purposes – regardless of the reason for a player’s absence.
Williams returned to the tour briefly in March after a 14-month absence. She was not seeded at tournaments in Indian Wells and Miami, and had two wins and two losses.
While Williams can enter Roland Garros under the WTA’s protected or “special” ranking rule, it’s up to Grand Slam organisers to give her a seed.
Without a seeding, the 23-time Grand Slam champion risks facing stars in the early rounds.
The WTA is considering a rule change to add protected seeding for highly-ranked players returning from materni