AFP

Serena focused on Australian Open, not engagement

Serena focused on Australian Open, not engagement

Serena Williams is putting her engagement aside for the time being as she focuses her attention on the Australian Open.

The American great, 35, announced her engagement to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian late last year.

But the 22-time grand slam champion said she wanted not to think about it until after the year's first major.

"It's been really great," Williams said on Saturday.

"I've said from the beginning, I just didn't want to think about it until after Australia because I was, like, grand slams mean a lot to me. I was, like, well, I'm not going to think about it.

"It's almost a little unreal right now because I haven't taken it in. I'm being rather selfish and focused on my career."

Williams is coming off an injury-hit season, one during which she reached three major finals, winning Wimbledon.

But the world number two, who faces teenager Belinda Bencic in the first round at Melbourne Park, said she expected better.

"For me, it wasn't a great season. I think for other people it would have been wonderful," Williams said.

"For me, it wasn't. It was what it was. I'm still hitting."