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“Body got a shock”: Naomi Osaka out of Australian Open warm-up

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Naomi Osaka withdrew from the Australian Open practice tournament on Saturday after playing her first match for four months, saying she had “a body blow”, opening the door for Simona Halep’s Melbourne summer set title . Defending Australian Open champion Osaka entered court this week for the first time since an early exit at the US Open, after which she took a long break to deal with personal matters. In Melbourne, he played three matches one after the other and they took a toll. She withdrew before the start of the semi-final against Russian Veronika Kudermatova at Rod Laver Arena.

The Japanese superstar and top seed said in a statement released by the Australian Open on Twitter, “Unfortunately I have a stomach injury, which I need to rest and prepare for the #AusOpen.”

Osaka said on her Twitter feed that it has been a tough comeback and she didn’t want to push too hard with the opening Grand Slam of the year starting on January 17.

“Sad to withdraw from today’s match due to injury, my body was jolted by playing one intense match after another after the break,” she said.

“Thanks for this love last week, I’ll try to relax and I’ll see you soon.”

The four-time Grand Slam champion defeated France’s 61st-ranked veteran Elise Cornet 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 in her opening match on Tuesday.

She then defeated Mariana Zanevska of Belgium 6-1, 6-1 and defeated Andrea Petkovic of Germany 6-1, 7-5 to reach the semi-finals.

Her return sent Kudermetova into the final with a walkover where she will face Halep, who defeated Chinese teenager Zheng Qinwen 6-3, 6-2.

The victory ensured that the Romanian, whose season was plagued by injury last year, reached the WTA singles final for the 13th consecutive season.

Positive

“I am really happy that I can play the final for the first tournament of the year. I feel good and am happy with the way I played,” said the two-time Grand Slam winner and former world number one. One.

“Last year was definitely the worst year I’ve ever had. Mentally toughest too.

“But I want to forget about it. I want to feel from now on. I’m positive. I feel fit on the court. I’m going well. I’m playing well.”

Halep missed Roland-Garros, Wimbledon and the Olympics last year with a calf injury and ended her season early with a knee problem, which has dropped her ranking to 20.

The two WTA events are being run simultaneously as part of the Melbourne summer set in the lead-up to this month’s Australian Open.

In the second tournament, American Amanda Anisimova defeated 26th-ranked Russian Daria Kasatkina to win her second WTA title, 6–2, 6–0 in the semi-finals.

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A 56-minute thrashing at Rod Laver Arena set up the final against either fellow American youth Gun Ann Lee or Belarus’ Aliaksandra Sasnovich, who play the latter.

Anisimova, 20, had lost her last 14 matches against top-30 players but was too hot for third seed Kasatkina, dominating her serve, converting seven of 11 break points.

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