Tennis: Tunisia’s Jabeur and Sabalenka join Berlin injury list

AFP , Saturday 22 Jun 2024

Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur and Aryna Sabalenka joined the procession of injured stars limping off the Berlin grass as they retired Saturday while losing their delayed quarterfinals in the Wimbledon warm-up event.

Jabeur
Tunisia s Ons Jabeur returns a ball against Coco Gauff of the U.S. during their singles women quarterfinals match of the WTA Tour in Berlin, Saturday June 22, 2024. AP

 

Eighth-seeded Jabeur had gone toe-to-toe with top seed Coco Gauff before losing a one-hour 14 minute first set tiebreak 11/9 before packing her rackets in her bag and walking off.

Second-seeded Belarusian Sabalenka retired against unseeded Russian Anna Kalinskaya trailing 5-1 in the first set, in one of the quarterfinals pushed back to Saturday morning by rain on Friday.

"It doesn't feel like a win," said Gauff on court. "Especially as we had such a great first set."

"It's not the way you want to finish a match, especially with someone who is so nice on and off the court."

Gauff said the Tunisian had indicated she was not seriously injured.

"I know she's going to feel better tomorrow and should be fine for Wimbledon."

Trailing 4-1, Sabalenka called a medical timeout to have her shoulder and neck treated. She played on for one game before stopping. It was the first time the Belarusian had retired injured in a WTA tournament, said the women's tennis body.

"I played really good. I had a good start. I'm happy to be in the semifinals," Kalinskaya said. "I'm happy to have three matches (here), fourth one on grass. That gives me confidence."

On Thursday, reigning Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrousova retired with a right hip injury from her second-round match, also against Kalinskaya.

On Friday, former Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina pulled out while trailing Victoria Azarenka in the quarter-finals.

Azarenka will play Kalinskaya in one semi-final later on Saturday.

Gauff will face compatriot Jessica Pegula who beat Czech Katerina Siniakova 7-6 (7/2), 3-6, 6-3 on Saturday. The fourth-seeded American had led 4-2 in the third set when rain halted play on Friday.

Gauff said her training regime prepared her to play twice in one day.

"I'll be ready for later today," said Gauff.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

Short link: