Top player Ashleigh Barty retired injured midway through the second set of her French Open second-round match against Poland’s Magda Linette on Thursday. The Australian, who won the title on her last visit to Rolando Garros in 2019, left the court for the treatment after losing the first set 6-1.
The 2019 champion had strapped on her left thigh and struggled with her movement. Barty, 25, left the court for a medical time out before retiring at 2-2 in the second set on Court Philippe Chatrier. Barty also retired injured from the Italian open during the quarter-final against Coco-Gauff last month.
“It’s going to be a little bit tough this week. I think over the weekend we had a bit of a flare-up through my left hip,” she said after beating Bernarda Pera in three sets on Tuesday. It’s Barty’s earliest exit from a Grand Slam tournament since a second-round loss at Roland Garros in 2018. The 25-year old’s withdrawal leaves the tournament already without the world’s top three ranked women’s player.
Word’s number two Naomi Osaka stunned the sport by pulling out following a media boycott, saying she had suffered “bouts of depression” for three years. Third-ranked Simona Halep, the 2018 French open winner, withdrew before the event with injury.
That leaves world number four Aryna Sabalenka as the top remaining player in the draw, despite the Belarusian never having reached a Grand Slam quarter-final. The world’s top three will not be the only notable absences from the third round, with injury-plagued former us open champion Bianca Andreescue having lost at the first hurdle.