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Serena Williams withdraws from Italian Open because of Achilles injury

Serena Williams returns a shot to Victoria Azarenka in the U.S. Open semifinals.
Serena Williams returns a shot during her loss to Victoria Azarenka in the U.S. Open semifinals on Thursday.
(Frank Franklin II / Associated Press)

Four-time champion Serena Williams withdrew from the upcoming Italian Open, citing the Achilles issue that bothered her in a loss to Victoria Azarenka in the U.S. Open semifinals, tournament organizers announced Saturday.

Williams took a medical timeout for a trainer to tape her Achilles during her three-set loss on Thursday.

The Italian Open, which was rescheduled from May due to the COVID-19 pandemic, begins Monday.

Azarenka remained entered for Rome.

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In the men’s tournament, U.S. Open finalists Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev withdrew, as did Daniil Medvedev, who lost to Thiem in the semifinals in New York.

After dominating the first set, Serena Williams falls to Victoria Azarenka in the U.S. Open semifinals. Azarenka will play Naomi Osaka for the title.

Nine-time champion Rafael Nadal headlines the Italian Open field, marking his return to tennis after a seven-month layoff. The Spaniard has been practicing in Rome for several days.

Top-ranked Novak Djokovic, who was disqualified from the U.S. Open, is also entered.

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The clay court tournament in Rome is a warmup event for the French Open, which starts Sept. 27 after being postponed from late spring.


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