Elena Rybakina details her health struggles throughout 2024 after shock RG exit

Rybakina didn't look particularly well throughout her French Open quarterfinal defeat to Jasmine Paolini.

by Dzevad Mesic
Elena Rybakina details her health struggles throughout 2024 after shock RG exit
© Getty Images Sport - Tim Goode

Elena Rybakina said it was "a bad day" against Jasmine Paolini and also shared that she was again hampered with health issues, which include allergies and sleeping issues. 

Rybakina, seeded at No. 4, didn't look like her usual throughout the match against Paolini before suffering a 2-6 6-4 4-6 defeat to the 12th-seeded Italian in the French Open quarterfinal. In the second set, Rybakina was three times down by a break but every time managed to recover and ultimately force a third set. 

But when the third set started, Rybakina's inconsistent play continued and it culminated in the 2022 Wimbledon champion exiting the French Open earlier than expected. 

“It was a bad day. As I was saying, I was struggling a little bit with the health issues past few weeks, so I think it's just all together. But in the end no matter all these things, which were maybe happening outside of the court, I managed to get to the quarters. I think it's a pretty good result," Rybakina said.

"Of course, I always want to win, but a lot of tough opponents, a lot of matches, and I think overall it's been positive French Open for me.”

Elena Rybakina
Elena Rybakina © Getty Images Sport - Dan Istitene

Rybakina explains her health struggles throughout 2024

After revealing that she was struggling with a virus during the French Open, Rybakina also wasn't able to defend her Indian Wells due to a gastrointestinal illness. Then just before the French Open, the 24-year-old Kazakh also didn't defend her Rome title, again citing an illness. 

At Roland Garros, Rybakina managed to play and make the quarterfinal. But Rybakina making a deep run didn't mean that she was fully healthy. 

Now, Rybakina confirms that she hasn't really had issues with injuries this year but it's rather dealing with illnesses and allergies.

“Well, I'm not going to go deep in this topic for sure, but l've been working a lot, and I think there is a lot of, as I say, ups and downs. It's always different, but as I always say, also, the schedule is not easy," Rybakina said.

"At the end of the day everybody is trying to manage as best as possible. I think l've played a lot. As I said, if the body is on the limit, I can't go on the court. If I'm not 100% ready, then it's a risk to even get bigger injuries or something.

"For now it's been health with allergies, sleeping, so it's a little bit different from maybe last year when I had back problems. I heal. It's always ups and downs. It's tennis, so we’re just trying to find the best possible way for me to prepare and be ready for big events like Grand Slams and 1000 events.”

Elena Rybakina
Elena Rybakina © Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

Rybakina assesses her 2024 results

After dominantly winning Brisbane in her opening match of the year, Rybakina disappointingly lost in the Australian Open second round. And since then, Rybakina has missed some big tournaments but has still managed to win titles in Abu Dhabi and Stuttgart, and also finish as runner-up in Doha and Miami.

Specifically during the clay season, Rybakina won her first Stuttgart title - was a semifinalist in Madrid - and now made the French Open quarterfinal. 

Considering the circumstances and health issues that have plagued her throughout 2024, the 24-year-old Kazakh feels she has done well in the first half of the season. 

“I'm really happy with the results. I mean, I played so many matches. Also, good wins against top players. Of course, it's a lot of ups and downs from my side, missing some events. Of course, I would like to play everything, but if the body is on the limit, I cannot do anything," Rybakina said.

"For now I'm pretty happy, and if I can continue like this until the end of the year it's going to be not bad for sure.”

Elena Rybakina
Elena Rybakina © Getty Images Sport - Chris Hyde

Now, Rybakina will probably take a couple of days off to rest and recover. After that, Rybakina will probably start practicing on grass and preparing for the upcoming grass season.

Last month, a WTA 500 tournament in Berlin released its entry list and Rybakina's name was on it. If everything stays as planned, Rybakina should then kick off her grass season in Berlin, which starts on June 17th.

In Berlin, Rybakina is expected to make her third appearance. Previously, Rybakina picked up round-of-16 exits in Berlin in 2021 and 2023.

Since Berlin's entry list also features Iga Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka and Coco Gauff, Rybakina could face some pretty tough competition in her opening grass event.

Elena Rybakina French Open Jasmine Paolini