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Aryna Sabalenka, Wimbledon No. 3 seed, withdraws due to shoulder injury

Aryna Sabalenka, Wimbledon No. 3 seed, withdraws due to shoulder injury

Aryna Sabalenka plays a backhand during practice prior to The Championships Wimbledon 2024 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 28, 2024 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Aryna Sabalenka has withdrawn from Wimbledon due to an injured shoulder.

The two-time Australian Open champion and No. 3 seed at this year's Wimbledon tournament was scheduled to play Emina Bektas of the United States in the first round. Sabalenka has been dealing with shoulder pain since withdrawing from the Berlin Ladies Open quarterfinal over a week ago.

“Heartbroken to have to tell you all that I won’t be able to play The Championships this year. I tried everything to get myself ready but unfortunately my shoulder is not cooperating,” Sabalenka wrote on Instagram Monday.

“I pushed myself to the limit in practice today to try my best, but my team explained that playing would only make things much worse. This tournament means so much to me and I promise I’ll be back stronger than ever next year.”

Sabalenka, who reached the Wimbledon semifinals in each of her last two appearances, said the injury has been "very frustrating" in that she's been able to practice, but has had trouble with serving.

"If you give me some weights, I’m going to go lift some weights," Sabalenka said. "But if you tell me to serve, I’m going to go through pain. We did an MRI, we did everything. We did a lot of rehab, a lot of treatments and everything.”

Sabalenka will be replaced by Russia's Erika Andreeva, who lost in the final round of qualifying.

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