Sport Azarenka the latest star to withdraw from Australian Open

03:36  08 january  2018
03:36  08 january  2018 Source:   Omnisport

Novak Djokovic joins Rafael Nadal in pulling out of Australian Open warm-ups with injury

  Novak Djokovic joins Rafael Nadal in pulling out of Australian Open warm-ups with injury Novak Djokovic has not played competitive tennis since his loss in the 2017 Wimbledon quarter-finals and was expected to return to action at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship.The Serbian has not played competitive tennis since his loss in the quarter-finals at the 2017 Wimbledon and was expected to return to action at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship starting on 28 December but had to withdraw at the last moment. It was the first time in Djokovic's career that he had picked up a serious injury and the absence meant he dropped down to 12th in the world rankings.

NEW YORK — Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka withdrew from the U.S. Open on Monday because she was unable to resolve a custody dispute with her infant son’s father. The 28-year-old star from Belarus gave birth to her first child in December and she returned to the tour in June.

Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka withdrew from the US Open on Monday because she was unable to resolve a custody dispute Victoria Azarenka announced on Monday that she is pulling out of the US Open later this month. Above, a picture of the Belarus tennis star at the

victoriaazarenka - Cropped: Belarusian Victoria Azarenka © Provided by Omnisport Belarusian Victoria Azarenka

The Australian Open has been dealt another blow after two-time champion Victoria Azarenka withdrew a week out from the year's opening grand slam.

Azarenka's absence was confirmed on Monday as she joined reigning champion and 23-time major winner Serena Williams on the sidelines, while five-time runner-up Andy Murray and Kei Nishikori have already withdrawn on the men's side.

The 28-year-old former world number one – who pulled out of the Auckland Open – was granted a wildcard for the Australian Open last month but she will not make the trip to Melbourne amid an ongoing custody battle over her son.

Azarenka has not featured on the WTA Tour since Wimbledon in July, sitting out the US Open and the Fed Cup final due to the childcare issue.

"It's unfortunate that Azarenka is unable to travel to Australia this year," tournament director Craig Tiley said.

"The Australian Open is her favourite tournament and she's looking forward to returning to Melbourne next year."

Belarusian Azarenka – winner of the Australian Open in 2012 and 2013 – only made six appearances in 2017, claiming four victories.

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Seeking to shake off an elbow problem to compete at the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic will use the Kooyong Classic as a proving ground.Novak Djokovic has added the Kooyong Classic to his schedule as the former world number one attempts to prove his fitness ahead of the Australian Open.

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