United States' Serena Williams hits a forehand during her first round match against Pauline Parmentier of France at the ASB Classic tennis tournament in Auckland, New Zealand, Tuesday, Jan 3, 2017. (Jason Oxenham/New Zealand Herald via AP)
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Serena Williams overcame rust and a troublesome wind to launch her comeback from a four-month layoff with a 6-3, 6-4 win over 69th-ranked Pauline Parmentier at the Auckland Classic Tuesday.In her first outing since she was shocked by Karolina Pliskova in the U.S. Open semifinals in September, the world No. 2 made a sluggish start to a season in which she is seeking a record 23rd Grand Slam title.In her first-round match, delayed from Monday when rain washed out play, Williams struggled initially as France's Parmentier broke the American's first service game and then held to love. But Williams, who shares the Open-era record of 22 Grand Slams with Steffi Graf, and is two behind Margaret Court's all-time record of 24, grew steadily stronger and finished with her eighth ace.
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