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Indian Wells Open 2024

Defending champion Elena Rybakina withdraws from Indian Wells Open 2024 due to illness

Published at :March 9, 2024 at 5:21 PM
Modified at :March 9, 2024 at 8:59 PM
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(Courtesy : News 18)

Mohammed Fazeel

Rybakina was replaced by Kayla Day, who crashed out with a defeat against Nadia Podoroska

Defending champion Elena Rybakina withdrew from the Indian Wells Open 2024, just hours before her second-round match against Nadia Podoroska, citing a gastrointestinal illness.

The 24-year-old Kazakh player’s spot was taken by lucky loser Kayla Day. However, Day’s return to Indian Wells after a four-year hiatus ended in a straight-set defeat, 7-6(3), 6-4, to Podoroska.

Rybakina had a strong start to 2024, claiming the Brisbane International title with a convincing 6-0, 6-3 victory over Aryna Sabalenka. Ranked World No. 4, she continued her success with a win against Daria Kasatkina in the Mubadala Abu Dhabi Open final, 6-1, 6-4.

Despite reaching the final in Doha, Rybakina fell to Iga Swiatek and later gave a walkover to Jasmine Paolini in Dubai, citing illness. This marks her second withdrawal within a fortnight.

The WTA 1000 event saw other high-profile exits as well. Sixth seed Ons Jabeur suffered a straight-set loss, 6-4, 6-4, to unseeded American Katie Volynets in the second round. This victory marks the biggest of Volynets’ career. Meanwhile, Angelique Kerber made a successful comeback from maternity leave, overcoming a one-set deficit to defeat No. 10 seed Jelena Ostapenko, 5-7, 6-3, 6-3, in a match lasting over two hours.

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Naomi Osaka, the 2018 champion, continues her pursuit of the title and is set to face Liudmila Samsonova in the second round. In the men’s competition, Ben Shelton and Carlos Alcaraz both staged comebacks from a set down to secure victories over Jakub Mensik and Matteo Arnaldi, respectively.

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