• Serena Williams pulls out with an Achilles injury
  • Rafael Nadal and Simona Halep advance
  • More news from Day Four
PARIS, FRANCE – Serena Williams pulled out of her second-round match with an Achilles injury and there was plenty of other drama on Day Four.


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The wait for ’24’ goes on as Serena Williams withdraws

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The day started with the news that 23-time Slam champion Serena Williams had withdrawn shortly before her second round match with Tsvetana Pironkova.

She told reporters: “It’s my Achilles that didn’t have enough time to properly heal after the Open. I was able to get it somewhat better, but just looking long term in this tournament will I be able to get through enough matches. And so for me I don’t think I could, I’m struggling to walk, so that’s kind of a telltale sign that I should try to recover.”

With very few opportunities for the WTA tour after Ostrava, following Roland Garros, Williams’ 2020 comes to an end, and with Tennis Australia declaring that players will have to come to Australia at least two weeks before the start of the season, Williams has plenty of time to recover from the injury.

She continued: “I need four to six weeks of sitting and doing nothing, at least two weeks of just sitting down, and then from after that two weeks I have been told that I need to start doing a little training.

“So I think I’m going to call it more than likely. I don’t know, doing the math on that, I don’t know if I’ll be able to play another tournament this year. I’m definitely going to take that first initial two weeks of just nothing, and then start from the next two weeks, and then from that I will get a little bit better. But it will give me a lot of time to fully recover for the future.”


Champions Corner

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As to be expected Rafael Nadal continues to crush his early opponents like little shards of red brick under his feet, this time dropping four games to Mackenzie Macdonald, and equally Simona Halep continued her dominance over her fellow countrywomen despite actually dropping her serve a couple of times against Irina-Camelia Begu but edged her out in straight sets.

Meanwhile newly minted US Open champion Dominic Thiem is on a nine-match winning streak while the vanquished finalist in New York Alexander Zverev decided to take the scenic route, pushed to five sets by Pierre-Hugues Herbert.


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Dramatic Exits and Wheelchairs

Another US Open finalist, Victoria Azarenka still hasn’t really learned to love the dirt, and despite taking a heavy fall, Anna Karolina Schmiedlova rallied to despatch the No. 10 seed.

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All the drama was to be had between Sara Errani and Kiki Bertens, who was suffering with cramps and despite battling through to beat the Italian in the decider 9-7, ended up being wheeled off in a wheelchair in more pain.

Errani was less than impressed saying in her press conference: “She played an amazing match, but I don’t like the situation. One hour she’s injury, then she run like never. I don’t like that. She go out of the court on the chair, and now she’s in the locker perfect, in the restaurant. I don’t like these things. I’m sorry.”

Meanwhile Bertens feels that perhaps Errani should have been around a little earlier:

She told reporters: “She can say whatever she feels like. Maybe I should take some more acting classes or should pursue a career in that, I’m not sure what she’s thinking, but, no, I didn’t feel really good on court to be honest.

“It was even worse and I was in the treatment room for like 45 [minutes] with the physios and then I think after 30 minutes I stopped cramping, so maybe she, she should have been in there and then she should have seen what happened.”

The second round continues on Day Five from 11am (10am BST).


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