Azarenka facing US Open fitness fight
Victoria Azarenka is facing the very real possibility of missing out on the US Open after pulling out of the Montreal Cup and Cincinnati Masters after picking up a worrying knee injury.
Azarenka pulled out of the tournament in Montreal during her first-round clash against Tamira Paszek, sustaining a problem to her left knee during the opening set.
“The last week took so much energy out of me that I had absolutely no time to recover, and my body is feeling it,” Azarenka admitted after her withdrawal.
“It was a little bit too quick of a transition for me to come and start the training, and I felt my knee just wasn’t in good shape. I’m now focusing on making sure I’m right for Flushing Meadows.”
Thousansa of fans crammed into the All England Club, plus many more tuning in to watch live tennis online
at home, to see world number one end a packed couple of months by clinching a Olympic bronze medal in the singles event and gold in the mixed doubles for Belarus.
Azarenka’s appearance at the Olympics came just weeks after a gruelling Wimbledon campaign in which the 23-year old reached the semi-finals before losing to eventual winner Serena Williams.
It now appears that the heavy workload Azarenka has undertaken this year has now taken its toll. It’s been a successful season for the Belarusian star so far, clinching the Australian Open as well as reaching the top of the world rankings, whether or not that will have an impact on her end of season hopes remains to be seen.
The US Open hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for Azarenka in the past, never progressing past the fourth round, and the latest online bets suggests punters
are not confident of anything changing this year either.
But the world number one has never gone into the final Grand Slam of the season in the sort of form she has been this year. If the big-hitting right-hander can shake off her knee problem then she will be in with a great chance of finally reaching the latter stages at Flushing Meadows.