Two-time Grand Slam champion Victoria Azarenka will miss the US Open for the second year in a row, the result of an ongoing personal matter. It is unknown if she will play in other events for the remainder of the year.
The 28-year-old announced her pregnancy in July 2016, sitting out the rest of the year and giving birth to her son Leo, in December. She originally planned to return during this year’s US Open Series but moved up her return date, making her 2017 debut at the Wimbledon tune-up in Mallorca, Spain, where she advanced to the second round.
Azarenka then accepted a wild card into Wimbledon, where she made it to the fourth round before falling to world No. 2 Simona Halep. Azarenka’s strong showing surged her rankings from No. 683 to No. 204.
Azarenka fell to Serena Williams in the US Open final in 2012 and 2013, both in three sets. In addition, she has won two Australian Open titles, has been to the semifinals or better at all four majors and owns 20 career titles, including three in 2016 (Brisbane, Miami, Indian Wells) before announcing her pregnancy.
She has also earned six doubles titles and two Grand Slam mixed doubles crowns, and won the gold medal in mixed doubles at the 2012 Olympics with Max Mirnyi.
In a statement from Azarenka, she plans to return to New York in 2018.
“I am sadly unable to compete in this year's US Open due to my ongoing family situation that I am working through,” she said. “While I will dearly miss being in New York and playing in one of my favorite tournaments where I have enjoyed some of the best moments in my career, I am already looking forward to being back next year.”
Azarenka’s withdrawal moves Japan’s Misa Eguchi the main draw.
The US Open takes place Aug. 28 - Sept. 10.