Mon, 26 Oct 2020

PARIS, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- US Open champion Naomi Osaka has pulled out of the French Open, which is to take place from September 27 to October 11, because of a hamstring injury, as the Japanese star tweeted on Friday.

"Unfortunately, I won't be able to play the French Open this year. My hamstring is still sore, so I won't have enough time to prepare for the clay," Osaka said on Twitter and Instagram.

"These two tournaments came too close to each other for me this time," she added.

The 22-year-old Osaka outlasted an inspired Victoria Azarenka from Belarus 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 in the US Open final on September 12 to clinch her second US Open title and third Grand Slam, following her victories in the 2018 US Open and 2019 Australian Open.

The withdrawal of Osaka meant that two of the current world's top three women's players would not play at Roland Garros this year, as reigning champion and world No. 1 Ashleigh Barty already announced earlier this month that she would not be able to participate the clay major due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Osaka's announcement came just hours after the French Open organizers were forced to reduce the maximum of spectators per day from 11,500 to 5,000, with the coronavirus situation deteriorating in France recently.

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