After 14 years away, Serena Williams is ready to forgive Indian Wells.

The world's No. 1 women's tennis player said Wednesday that she will play in the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif., next month, ending a personal boycott that began when she was booed at the 2001 event.

Williams had repeatedly vowed never to return to the two-week tournament. She announced her change of heart in a column for

"I play for the love of the game," Williams wrote. "And it is with that love in mind, and a new understanding of the true meaning of forgiveness, that I will proudly return to Indian Wells in 2015."

The 19-time Grand Slam champion wrote broadly about the "undercurrent of racism" in tennis and said it was especially acute during the 2001 semifinal and final at Indian Wells. She and her sister Venus were to face each other in a semifinal, but Venus withdrew because of tendinitis. Serena was booed then and in the final, and there were accusations that their father had ordered Venus to withdraw.

"In a game I loved with all my heart, at one of my most cherished tournaments, I suddenly felt unwelcome, alone and afraid," Williams wrote. She said the experience "haunted me for a long time."

Top seed Karlovic falls in Croatia

Marcos Baghdatis survived 26 aces and saved a match point to upset top-seeded Ivo Karlovic 3-6, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (7) in the opening round of the Zagreb Indoors in Croatia.


Woods keeps eye on Masters

The tournament that Tiger Woods used to dominate now feels more like a big practice ground with views of the Pacific.

Woods said Wednesday he's viewing this week's stop at Torrey Pines in San Diego, where he has won eight times, as preparation for the Masters. This comes after he shot an 82 at the Phoenix Open, the highest score of his career.

"The whole idea is to make sure that I'm ready for Augusta, so I got a lot of rounds to play between now and then," Woods said after a pro-am round at the Farmers Insurance Open.


Miller's return postponed a day

Bode Miller has waited more than two months for a return to racing after back surgery. What's one more day?

The men's super-G race at the world championships in Beaver Creek, Colo., was postponed to Thursday because of too much snow on the course.

Miller, a six-time Olympic medalist, was to race for the first time since surgery in November.


No charges for Indians pitcher

Prosecutors in Cleveland say they won't file charges against Indians pitcher Danny Salazar, who was the subject of a sexual-assault investigation.

According to a police report from Jan. 23, officers interviewed a woman about an incident at a nightclub.

Salazar, expected to compete for a spot in the starting rotation, is not named in the incident report, but the Indians acknowledged he was being investigated.

Cardinals sign longtime Phillies pitcher

• Free-agent righthanded pitcher Kyle Kendrick and the Colorado Rockies agreed on a $5.5 million, one-year contract. Kendrick is 74-68 with a 4.42 ERA in eight major league seasons, all with Philadelphia.

•Righthander Carlos Villanueva agreed to a minor league contract with St. Louis. He is 45-50 with a 4.26 ERA in nine seasons with Milwaukee, Toronto and the Chicago Cubs.