Aryna Sabalenka to skip Paris Olympics to ‘take care of health’

Aryna Sabalenka will skip a return to Roland Garros (AP)

World number three Aryna Sabalenka will not play at the Paris Olympics in order to focus on her health and prepare for the hard court tournaments, the twice grand slam champion said on Monday.

The Belarusian won the Australian Open in January, but was knocked out by 17-year-old Russian Mirra Andreeva in the French Open quarter-finals this month.

Sabalenka appeared to be struggling with illness during that encounter, and has also dealt with a back issue this year.

The 26-year-old hopes that a rest will do her some good ahead of the US Open at the end of the summer after turning down the chance to play at Paris 2024.

“Especially with all the struggles I’ve been struggling with the last months, I feel I have to take care of my health,” Sabalenka explained at the Berlin Ladies Open. “It’s too much for the scheduling and I made the decision to take care of my health.

aryna sabalenka, paris olympics, grand slam, paris 2024, aryna sabalenka to skip paris olympics to ‘take care of health’
Aryna Sabalenka battled illness before exiting the French Open to Mirra Andreeva (REUTERS)

“I prefer to have a little rest to make sure physically and health-wise I’m ready for the hard courts.”

Sabalenka will next be action against Russian Daria Kasatkina in the last 16 in Berlin.

The Paris Olympics run from July 26 to August 11, with the tennis action held at Roland Garros.

The year’s final grand slam, meanwhile, is due to begin in New York on August 26 with Sabalenka seeking a first Flushing Meadows title after being beaten by Coco Gauff in the US Open final last year.

Reuters

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