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Serena retires from Wimbledon doubles match in bizarre scene

Serena Williams struggled to handle the ball and looked out of sorts during her warmup. Photo: Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Serena Williams struggled to handle the ball and looked out of sorts during her warmup.

LONDON -- After appearing listless and disoriented, Serena Williams retired from her second-round doubles match at Wimbledon on Tuesday.

Serena and her sister Venus pulled out only three games into the first set against Kristina Barrois and Stefanie Voegele. The tournament referee later said the world's No. 1 singles player was suffering from a viral illness. 

"I'm heartbroken I'm not able to continue in the tournament," Serena said in a statement more than two hours after the match. "I thought I could rally this morning, because I really wanted to compete, but this bug just got the best of me."

Serena, 32, who lost her third-round singles match to No. 25 Alize Cornet on Saturday, whiffed on shots and struggled to collect balls tossed to her during the warm-up. The start of the match was delayed for about 10 minutes as doctors examined her and took her blood pressure.

Watch part of the warm-up below:

Serving in the third game, Serena hit four straight double faults. None of the serves had any pace, nor were they remotely close to landing in. A few fell well in front of the net. After her third double fault, chair umpire Kader Nouni climbed down and consulted with the younger sister. Serena then served another double fault, and the Williamses retired trailing 0-3.

Here's what Serena looked like trying to serve:

(via @SportAnding)

(via @Shane B)

Watch the entire service game below:

Serena's coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, and hitting partner Sascha Bajin said after the match that they had no idea what was wrong with the 17-time Grand Slam singles champion, according to The New York Times.

This story has been updated.

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