Reigning US Open champion Bianca Andreescu has pulled out of the Australian Open still struggling with a knee injury she sustained at the WTA Finals last year.
With a remarkable breakout year in 2019, winning the last Grand Slam of the season defeating six-time US Open champion Serena Williams in straight sets, the stage was set up for the 19-year-old’s performance at the first Grand Slam of the season.
However, at the season-ending WTA Finals in Shenzhen, the Canadian sustained an injury on her left knee which forced her to withdraw from the tournament. Seemingly still troubled by the issue despite undergoing rehab for her knee, Andreescu tweeted:
” …Following the recommendation of the doctors, the Australian Open is unfortunately too soon in my rehab process and I sadly will not be able to play in it this year.”
From being a qualifier at the Australian Open in 2019 to being ranked at 6 in 2020, Andreescu’s meteoric rise is one for the history books. From world no.178, the youngster went on to clinch three titles including a Grand Slam win.
Andreescu defeated former world no.1 Angelique Kerber to win at the Indian Wells Masters and won the Rogers Cup in her home country, becoming the first Canadian win in 50 years. Her stellar year ended as the only tennis play to be the recipient of the Lou Marsh Trophy as Canada’s athlete of the year as she became the only Canadian to win a Grand Slam singles title.
Expected to make a full recovery by the new season, the WTA Newcomer of the Year was scheduled to make an appearance at the Auckland Open prior to the Australian Open but withdrew due to the same injury. Fans were still hoping that Andreescu would play at the Australian Open, but with a strong season last year, Andreescu’s performance in this season will be a memorable one.
Another shocking absence from the major will be Juan Martin Del Potro who has also been struggling with a knee injury since June.