Venus Williams withdraws from Australian Open

Venus Williams has withdrawn from the Australian Open due to an injury she sustained at the ASB Classic in New Zealand, tournament organizers announced via Twitter on Saturday.

The American was awarded a main draw wildcard for her 22nd appearance at the Australian Open, 25 years after her tournament debut in 1998.

Williams’ withdrawal comes just days after she won her first singles match in a year and a half, beating fellow American Katie Volynets 7-6 (4) 6-2 in the opening round of the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand .

The 42-year-old then lost to Zhu Lin of China 3-6, 6-2, 7-5 in the next round of the tournament.

She was a two-time Australian Open finalist – in 2003 and 2017 and lost to her sister, Serena, on both occasions.

Now ranked outside the top 1000, Williams has won seven major titles since debuting professionally in 1994 and has become the world number one in both singles and doubles.

World No 1 Carlos Alcaraz will also miss the Australian Open due to a leg injury, he said on Friday.

The tournament was supposed to be the 19-year-old’s first Grand Slam since winning the US Open 2022 in September and becoming the youngest world No. 1 in men’s tennis history.

Meanwhile, there are question marks over the fitness of world No 1 Iga Swiatek after she withdrew from the Adelaide International 2 tournament on Saturday with a right shoulder injury.

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