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Tennis: Top-ranked Serena Williams withdraws from Italian Open

AP , Thursday 14 May 2015
Serena Williams from U.S.
Serena Williams from U.S. returns the ball during her Madrid Open tennis tournament match against Petra Kvitova from Czech Republic in Madrid, Spain, Friday, May 8, 2015 (Photo: AP)
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Top-ranked Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Italian Open.

Tournament organizers announced Williams' decision without explanation shortly before she was scheduled to face fellow American Christina McHale, a qualifier, in the third round.

Williams was scheduled to meet with reporters later.

In her opener Tuesday, Williams cruised past 39th-ranked Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-1, 6-3 in just over an hour.

The Italian Open is the last major warmup for the French Open, which starts in 10 days.

Williams is the defending champion at the Foro Italico.

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