The women’s singles draw of the 2021 French Open saw another big star bow out prematurely. Ash Barty, the world’s No. 1 ranked player and event’s top seed-holder, was forced to withdraw from the tournament due to a hip injury.
Barty was in the middle of her second-round matchup against Magda Linette when she felt a nagging hip injury worsen. The issue made it difficult for her to move around the court and impacted her serve. After a medical timeout didn’t give any results, the 25-year-old player made a decision to call it quits.
Speaking with reporters after the match, Barty said it was “heartbreaking” having to withdraw.
“We have had such a brilliant clay-court season, and to kind of get a little bit unlucky with timing, more than anything, to have something kind of acute happen over the weekend and just kind of run out of time against the clock is disappointing,” she added.
Ash Barty previously won Roland Garros in 2019, which marked her first career Grand Slam title. She opted not to come back as a defending champion last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Barty’s withdrawal comes few days after U.S. Open champion Naomi Osaka chose to drop out of the tournament following the controversy she caused by refusing to attend media conferences.