LONDON - Serena Williams was forced to pull out of her doubles match with sister Venus at Wimbledon on Tuesday after feeling unwell.
Up against German-Swiss duo Kristina Barrois and Stefanie Voegele, the 32-year-old American looked in distress when she incredibly served a whole game of double faults to trail 0-3.
The 17-times singles grand slam champion was treated by a tournament doctor as she sat on her chair and had her blood pressure checked while being consoled by her older sibling.
Unaware of the what the problem was some of the crowd began a slow-hand clap before a tearful Serena conceded the match.
The sisters, who have won five Wimbledon doubles titles in tandem, were clapped off as they left the court.
In a later statement, Williams said she had been suffering with some kind of bug.
"I am heartbroken I'm not able to continue in the tournament," she said. "I thought I could rally this morning, because I really wanted to compete, but this bug just got the best of me.
"I want to thank my sister, (opponents) Kristina, Stefanie and our teams for their support. We were all looking forward to a great match.
"From the bottom of my heart, I thank all of the fans for their cheers and understanding. I look forward to returning to Wimbledon next year."
The withdrawal completed a disappointing Wimbledon for the world No.1 after she was beaten in the singles by Alize Cornet on Saturday in the third round - her earliest exit since 2005.
Venus also lost in the singles third round, to former champion Petra Kvitova. (Reporting by Martyn Herman; editing by Clare Lovell and Pritha Sarkar)