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Classic in Auckland: Emma Raducanu’s injury worries ahead of the Australian Open

Britain’s Emma Raducanu lost to Viktoria Kuzmova in the second round of the WTA 250 Auckland Classic on Thursday after rolling her ankle. As a result, her participation in this month’s Australian Open is in doubt.

Raducanu, a former U.S. Open champion, won the first set in 22 minutes, but she struggled in the second. During a medical timeout, she had her left ankle examined, and she then left the court in tears because she was unable to win the first point of the decider.

On January 16, the Australian Open begins.
Coco Gauff had earlier defeated fellow American Sofia Kenin 6-4 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinals. Zhu Lin defeated China’s Venus Williams 3-6 6-2 7-5 in a rain-shortened match that lasted two hours and 23 minutes.

In the final set, Williams, 42, served for the match at 5-4, but Zhu broke and held off four break points before winning.

Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka defeated Zheng Qinwen 6-2, 7-5 on Thursday at the Adelaide International 1 WTA 500 event. She will play in the quarterfinals with unseeded Linda Noskova and Irina-Camelia Begu.

At the warm-up event for the Australian Open, China’s Zheng, who was named WTA Newcomer of the Year in 2022, hit 10 aces and won 34 games. However, he also made 35 unforced errors.

According to the former world number one, Azarenka, “She is a great talent.” She seems like she will be a really, really good player, in my opinion.

“I thought I pretty well stuck to my game plan today; I was consistent and took risks when I could. I continued to create more chances. Today in court, I was a lot more aggressive and a little more at ease.
Czech teenager Noskova, who upset Daria Kasatkina in the first round by beating fellow qualifier Clair Liu 6-2 6-2, will play Azarenka next.

Jelena Ostapenko, seed 7, was defeated by Romanian Begu in the quarterfinals by a score of 6-3, 6-0. Ostapenko made 41 unforced errors during her erratic performance.

Overcoming a 3-1 first-set deficit and securing the victory in 73 minutes, Begu won 11 of his next 12 matches. In order to advance to the semifinals, she will face Veronika Kudermetova, the fourth seed.

Later on Thursday, Ons Jabeur, who finished second at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, will take on Sorana Cirstea.

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