Tennis - Former world no. 1 Venus Williams has pulled out of the Mutua Madrid Open today, hours before she was scheduled to take to the Centre Court to play local wild card Anabel Medina Garrigues.
The 21st ranked American is suffering from a back injury which has plagued her on and off for weeks now.
Williams' place in the draw was taken by lucky loser Stefanie Voegele.
Venus commented in a statement "I was looking forward to playing, but unfortunately my back is hurting and I am not able to compete."
Also, Tamira Paszek has withdrawn from the event. The Austrian was due to take on Li Na but now the world no. 5 will play lucky loser Madison Keys.
Venus has been suffering from a variety of health problems in the past few years/