Britain’s Emma Radukanu retired 6-0 5-7 in her second-round matchup against Slovakia’s Victoria Kuzmova at the WTA 250 Auckland Classic on Thursday after spraining her ankle, casting doubt on her participation in the Australian Open this month.
Former US Open champion Radukanou won the first set in 22 minutes but stumbled in the second and her left ankle was examined during a medical timeout before leaving the court in tears after she failed to complete the first point of the decider.
“I have done a lot of physical work over the past few months and feel good and optimistic,” Stuff Media quoted Radukana as saying.
“To be stopped bizarre injury, ankle rotation is quite frustrating, including in the first week. I thought I played pretty decent tennis.
“The courts are incredibly smooth, very slippery even, so to be honest, it’s no wonder this happened to anyone… we will evaluate over the next few days and see what the next steps are.”
The Australian Open starts on January 16th.
Previously, Coco Gauff defeated American Sophia Kenin 6:4, 6:4 to advance to the quarterfinals against China’s Zhu Lin, who beat Venus Williams 3:6, 6:2, 7:5 in a rainy match that lasted 2 hours . and 23 minutes.
Williams, 42, served for the match 5-4 in the final set, but Zhu broke down and then saved four break points before closing out the win.
At the Adelaide International 1 WTA 500 tournament, two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka beat Zheng Qinwen 6:2 7:5 to reach the quarterfinals along with unseeded duo Irina-Kamelia Begu and Linda Noskova.
China’s Zheng, who was named WTA Rookie of the Year in 2022, posted 10 aces and 34 winners but also made 35 unforced errors in the Australian Open warm-up.
“She’s a great talent,” former world No. 1 Azarenka said. “I feel that she will be a very, very good player.
“I thought I stuck to my game plan well today… I was consistent, I used my chances when I could. I kept creating more moments. Today I was a lot more aggressive, I was a little more comfortable on the court.”
Belarusian Azarenka will then face Czech teenager Noskova, who, after her first-round loss to Daria Kasatkina, scored a 6-2 6-2 victory over her compatriot Claire Liu.
Romania’s Begu advanced to the quarter-finals after losing 6-3 6-0 to seventh-placed Latvian Jelena Ostapenko, who made 41 unforced errors in erratic play.
Begu won 11 games in a row, went 3-1 down in the first set and finished the win in 73 minutes. For reaching the semi-finals, she will play with the fourth seeded Veronika Kudermetova.
Ons Jaber, who came close to winning her first Grand Slam after finishing second at Wimbledon and the US Open last year, fought in the first set to beat Sorana Kirstya 7-6(3) 6-1 to set up the quarter-finals. -final with Marta Kostyuk in Adelaide.
“(Kirstya) is a great player, she pushed me to play better and better in the first set,” Zhaber said.
Runner-up Tunisia also outlined their goals for the year, saying “I want to be number one, I want to win Grand Slams.”