World No.1 Ashleigh Barty has been forced to withdraw from French Open 2021 during the second round match owing to a left hip injury, which she got a few days before the beginning of the Major event in Paris.
After the Italian Open’s quarter-final walkover, the 25-year-old Australian competed at the French Open, where she won her maiden Grand Slam title in 2019. The No.1 seed advanced to the second round after a three-set win over American Bernarda Pera.
Intending to secure the third-round spot, Ashleigh Barty came to Philippe-Chatrier court on Tuesday with a provoking injury and wrapping on her left leg to encounter Polish Magda Linette. But, Barty continuously suffered from trauma. As a result, she gave up the opening set to World No.70 by a scoreline of 1-6.
Grand Slam champion from Queensland received off-court medical treatment after the first set. However, Ashleigh Barty eventually decided to retire from the match during the second set. That time the score was on the board 2-2.
“It’s heartbreaking. I mean, 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,” Barty said to reporters in Roland Garros.
Australian further explained, “It won’t take away the brilliant three months that we have had, as much as it hurts right now.”
“We did everything, absolutely everything we could to give me a chance. It was a small miracle that we were able to get on the court for that first round.”
It Is a Completely New Injury, says Ashleigh Barty
Barty highlighted that she felt this kind of pain for the first time in her career and needed extra time to heal from this bruise and get back on the WTA Tour.
The 2021 Stuttgart Open champion also explained, “I just tried to give myself a chance, tried to give myself a chance and see how it felt. Obviously practising, we’ve had our restrictions and essentially tried to stay as fresh as possible and not aggravate it in any way, but in a match that’s unavoidable at times.”
“It got worse today and it was getting to the stage where it was unsafe. As hard as it is, it… had to be done. Right from the first game, I was battling the pain, and it just became too severe.”
“[It’s a] completely new injury, and I think something that I’ve never experienced before, even chatting with my physio, not something she has seen regularly either.”
“So we’ve been consulting with people all over the world to try and give us some insight into what the best ways to manage it are, to handle it, and I’m confident we do have a plan. It’s just that we ran out of time here.”
“It’s disappointing but not panic stations… We know what’s going on. We just need time to manage it to get back on the court as quickly as we can,” the 2021 Mutua Madrid Open runner-up concluded.