CONNECTICUT: World number one Simona Halep has withdrawn from the final US Open tune-up event in Connecticut with an Achilles injury, the Romanian said on Monday.
The French Open champion, whose North American hardcourt campaign included a win in Montreal and a runner-up finish in Cincinnati, said she needed time to recover for the year’s final grand slam after two weeks of competitive matches.
“I really wanted to play it and I saw that many fans bought tickets to see me here, but I feel very sore with my Achilles, and I need some rest,” Halep, who has not competed in the event since 2014, said in a statement released by the tournament. “I had so many matches in the last two weeks, so it’s tough. See you next year, and all the best.”
Halep, who lost in three sets to Dutchwoman Kiki Bertens on Sunday in Cincinnati, was scheduled to play on Tuesday in New Haven where she won the title in 2013.
“Hopefully Wednesday or Thursday I can get back on the court,” Halep, 26, told reporters. “I need to physically rest and to emotionally and mentally rest. I’ll see day by day how it goes.”
Halep said the injury is a recurring issue that forced her to miss time earlier this season, including the Wimbledon tune-up at Eastbourne.
“I’ve had it for a long time,” said Halep. It’s [been] bothering me, but I have to go through it.”
The 26-year-old Halep will be replaced in the draw by lucky loser Belinda Bencic of Switzerland.
American CoCo Vandeweghe also pulled out of the hardcourt tournament in New Haven on Sunday with a sore right ankle.
In Monday action, two-time Wimbledon winner Petra Kvitova overpowered 2016 champion Agnieszka Radwanska 6-1, 7-6 (7-3) and fourth-seeded Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic was knocked out by Russian Ekaterina Makarova 6-1, 6-3.
The US Open in New York runs from Aug 27 to Sept 9.
Published in Dawn, August 22nd, 2018