Britain’s Emma Raducanu retired at 6-0 5-7 in her second-round match against Viktoria Kuzmova at the WTA 250 Auckland Classic on Thursday after rolling her ankle, casting doubt on her participation at this month’s Australian Open.
The Former US Open champion swept the first set in 22 minutes but faltered in the second and had her left ankle examined during a medical time-out, before leaving the court in tears after being unable to complete the first point of the decider.
“I’ve put a lot of physical work in the last few months and I’ve been feeling good and optimistic,” she said. “So to be stopped by a freak injury, rolling an ankle is pretty disappointing, in the first week as well. I thought I was playing some pretty decent tennis.
Raducanu was marked as one of tennis’ hottest stars when she won the US Open in 2021. Her career since has been dogged by injuries. She retired from matches four times in 2022 and most recently has had to contend with a wrist injury.
Kuzmova will face Montenegro’s Danka Kovinic in the quarter-finals, after the latter defeated American Lauren Davis in three sets 4-6 6-3 6-2 to progress.T Australian Open begins on January 16.