Victoria Azarenka is the second Belarusian and third WTA player to withdraw from Wimbledon on Day 1

Azarenka joins Aryna Sabalenka and Ekaterina Alexandrova as noteworthy WTA players who withdrew
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Victoria Azarenka is the latest WTA player to withdraw from Wimbledon on Day 1 of the 2024 tournament. Azarenka, like her countrywoman Aryna Sabalenka, has a shoulder injury. Details of it are yet to be known. She will be replaced by lucky loser Elsa Jacquemont who will face Sloane Stephens in a first-round match later. Azarenka is a two-time Wimbledon semifinalist (2011, 2012) and made it to the fourth round in 2023.

In addition to Azarenka and Sabalenka, World No. 22 Ekaterina Alexandrova withdrew early in the morning with an illness. She was replaced by lucky loser Renata Zarazuta who is playing Emma Raducanu on Centre Court on Day 1.

All three of these women were in the same section of the draw, breaking it wide open for competitive play.

Sabalenka's portion of the draw

World No. 3 Sabalenka was in the bottom half of the draw with World No. 2 Coco Gauff. In addition to Gauff, the top three seeded players remaining are Jasmine Paolini, Qinwen Zheng, and Maria Sakkari, ranked seventh through ninth respectively.

Gauff has not experienced much success on the Wimbledon grass. She has two fourth-round finishes in 2019 and 2021, a third round finish in 2022, and lost in the first round in 2023. If Gauff is going to make a deep Wimbledon run, this looks like an opportunistic year and draw to do it in.

Aryna Sabalenka makes a confession. dark. Next. Aryna Sabalenka makes a confession

Injuries and illnesses have plagued the women's game. Given the long season and intense travel, no one should be surprised. Factoring in the different surfaces and balls on top of that, and it has to be tough for the women (and men also) to stay healthy and fit.

These are some of the reasons that top players, like Sabalenka, are choosing not to play the Paris Olympics later in the month.

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