- Victoria Azarenka has become latest high profile player to withdraw from Slam
- Australian Open organisers said two-time winner ‘unable to travel to Australia’
- Azarenka, world No 210, previously missed events due to child custody battle
Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka has become the latest star to pull out of the Melbourne tournament.
The 28-year-old won the Grand Slam in 2012 and 2013, but is ‘unable to travel to Australia this year’, organisers said.
She has previously missed tournaments owing to an ongoing child custody battle.
Victoria Azarenka has withdrawn from this month’s Australian Open in Melbourne
Azarenka has twice won the Melbourne Slam, in 2012 and 2013 (pictured)
Azarenka, currently ranked 210 in the world, had been given a wild card entry into the tournament, which begins on January 15.
Tournament director Craig Tiley tweeted: ‘It’s unfortunate that @vika7 is unable to travel to Australia this year. The #AusOpen is her favourite tournament and she’s looking forward to returning to Melbourne next year.’
Last week, reigning ladies singles champion Serena Williams said she would not play in Melbourne.
Azarenka, who is the present No 210 in the world, had been given a wildcard entry
Last year’s champion Serena Williams has also withdrawn from the tournament over fitness
The former world No 1 said she was ‘super close’ to being tournament-ready but reluctantly withdrew from the competition. It was due to be her first Grand Slam since giving birth to daughter Alexis Olympia in September.
Andy Murray, Kei Nishikori and Svetlana Kuznetsova have also withdrawn.