Elena Rybakina, who won Wimbledon last year, didn’t play in her third-round match at the French Open on Saturday because she was sick.
Rybakina said, “I just wanted to give my all, but I’m far from giving my all.” “If I can’t breathe, there’s no way I can try to run and fight.
The day’s first match on Court Philippe Chatrier was meant to be between the No. 4 seed Rybakina and the No. 132 seed Sara Sorribes Tormo.
At 11:45 a.m. local time, they were supposed to start playing, but Rybakina instead held a news conference to explain why she was dropping out of the second Grand Slam event of the year.
Rybakina said, with a stuffy voice, that she had a fever, hadn’t slept well the last two nights, and had trouble breathing during a practice session before her match on Saturday. She said that a doctor told her that there is a virus going around “here in Paris.”
Since Rybakina won her first two matches this week in straight sets, she was seen as one of the best chances to win the Roland Garros title. She has won her last 10 matches, and last month she won a warm-up tournament on red clay at the Italian Open.
She has a powerful game built around one of the best serves on the WTA Tour. This season, she has the most aces of anyone on the tour.
In July of last year, Rybakina beat Ons Jabeur in the final of Wimbledon to win her first major title.
Rybakina is 23 years old and was born in Moscow. Since 2018, when Kazakhstan gave her money to help her tennis career, she has been representing that country. During Wimbledon, people talked about the switch because the All England Club won’t let athletes from Russia or Belarus into the event in 2022 because of the war in Ukraine.
Sorribes Tormo, who is 26 years old, can move on to the fourth round of a Grand Slam event for the first time in her career because of the walkover.