Serena withdraws from Rome, Venus into third round

FILE US Serena Williams

In Tuesday's statement, the 23-time Grand Slam victor insisted she would still be competing in the French Open later in May. Venus will now play fellow American Sloane Stephens in the third round.

Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki retired from her first-round match at the Italian Open because of a leg injury.

Serena Williams is having trouble finishing a tournament.

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Serena's withdrawal comes a day after she beat Sweden's Rebecca Peterson in straight sets to set up a second-round meeting with her older sister Venus.

American Collins, 25, will now play two-time Grand Slam victor Garbine Muguruza of Spain in the second round of the Italian Open on Wednesday following Wozniacki's withdrawal.

"I'll be concentrating on rehab and look forward to seeing you all at the French Open and next year in Rome".

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In March, she withdrew before the third round of the Miami Open due to the same issue with her left knee, and...

The Italian Open has been a happy hunting ground for Williams: she last won the tournament in 2016, the fourth time she has claimed the title in Rome.

Serena is a four-time champion in the Italian capital, and she owns more match wins here than any other active player, an impressive 43-8 record.

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