Indian Wells suffers another withdrawal with top seed out due to positive COVID test
World number two Aryna Sabalenka has been forced to withdraw from Indian Wells after testing positive for COVID-19.
The Belarussian was due to be the top seed for the rescheduled event, and had a good chance of wrestling the world number one spot from Ashleigh Barty with a good performance there.
However, those hopes have now been all but wiped out.
“Unfortunately I’ve tested positive at Indian Wells and won’t be able to compete,” the 23-year-old revealed on Instagram.
“I’ve started my isolation and I’ll be staying here until I’m cleared by the doctors and health officials.
“So far I’m looking okay but really sad to not be able to play this year.”
Sabalenka’s withdrawal is a huge blow on her chances to finish 2021 as #1.
Pliskova and Krejcikova now have better chances.
— José Morgado (@josemorgado) October 3, 2021
It’s a further blow to tournament organisers who have already lost Serena Williams, Naomi Osaka, and Barty from the draw.
On the men’s side, there will also be no Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, and Dominic Thiem.
Sabalenka recently reached the semi-finals of the US Open, where she lost out to Canadian teenager Leylah Fernandez.
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