For the third time in her career, Victoria Azarenka was unable to complete a Grand Slam match. Among the favorites to threaten Serena Williams, Azarenka’s French Open bid was cut short today by a knee injury during her match with Italian Karin Knapp.
Azarenka injured the knee early on, then played through it as the knee allowed. Some points she was fine, others it appeared to lock up. Frustrated and in tears, she eventually retired to the No. 118 Knapp 63, 67, 40 ret.
“Heading into the match today I was feeling fine. I was ready to play,” Azarenka said in a statement after the match. “But I started to feel a sharp pain in my right knee. I’ve had an injury there before, a while ago, but it hasn’t been a problem until today. At first it was on and off and I was able to win the tie-break, but then it got worse as the match went on, and unfortunately there was nothing i could do.
“I haven’t made any plans yet for the days ahead, but will have treatment and can only look forward to playing Roland Garros next year.”
Azarenka, who battled a back injury earlier this clay season, had also retired previously from the 2009 Australian Open due to the heat and the 2010 US Open when she was suffering from a mild concussion. She was projected to play Serena in the quarterfinals.
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