Kazhak World No.4 Elena Rybakina pulls out of the French Open making the tournament draw wide open. The tennis fans were expecting a blockbuster semifinal between Rybakina and the Polish World No.1 Iga Swiatek but the unfortunate withdrawal of the Kazhak means that we might be seeing a Swiatek-Aryna Sabalenka final at least according to the projected draw.
Rybakina confirmed that she had a high fever, headache, and related health issues leading to the withdrawal. This also means that her opponent in the third round – the Spanish-unseeded player Sara Sorribes Tormo will move into the next round. Rybakina had a lower back injury during the Stuttgart Open a month back but she was able to recover in time for the French Open campaign.
Apart from the French Open title, there was a chance for Rybakina to get the World Number 1 rankings as well if she would have been able to clinch the title in the Parisian dirt. But the unfortunate sickness that came up at the wrong time has killed her hopes.
Elena Rybakina was one of the top contenders for the French Open crown
The reigning Wimbledon champion and the Australian Open finalist Elena Rybakina was also one of the top favorites to clinch her first French Open title this year. She was able to beat the Polish World No.1 Iga Swiatek in the quarter-finals of the Rome Masters before clinching the title, thanks to a walkover in the final match against Anhelina Kalinina. She was leading the final: 6-4, 1-0 when the opponent withdrew.
Rybakina and her fans must be devastated at this point in time because the odds were really in favor of her clinching the first title here as well. But since the withdrawal is not due to a serious injury, she must be looking forward to coming back stronger at Wimbledon.
Rybakina’s withdrawal means that the fight for the world number 1 ranking will be between Iga Swiatak and Aryna Sabelanka now. Swiatek will play her third-round match today whereas Sabalenka has already moved to the fourth round of the French Open.
Vipul Payattuparambil hails from Thiruvilwamala(Thrissur), Kerala(India). Besides being a Software Engineer by profession, he works at Firstsportz as a Tennis Writer. Sports are a part of his family culture, so he enjoys tennis, football, and cricket as much as his father. Rafael Nadal has been his role model since 2005, and he was fortunate enough to meet his idol once in Mallorca. Engaging in sports debates and reading sports journals are some of his favorite pastimes. As he sees it, sports should eventually unite people, like a handshake after a match between rivals.
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