Puerto Rico's Monica Puig has withdrawn from the Australian Open Grand Slam event in Melbourne due to an elbow injury, as per the tournament's official Twitter account. As a result of her withdrawal, Estonia's Kaia Kanepi moves into the main draw in the women's singles event.
Puig is ranked No. 79 in the world in singles and won the Olympic gold medal at the Rio Olympic Games in 2016. The 27-year-old Puig has been ranked as high as No. 26 in the world in 2016. She has a 6-6 record at the Australian Open - with her best performance being the third round in 2016.
Puig is the second notable name to pull out of the Open on the women's side after Victoria Azarenka, who had not entered the tournament due to personal reasons. 34-year-old Kanepi is ranked No. 101 in the world and was the first alternate into the main draw.
The former World No. 15 has an 8-10 record in Melbourne with her best performance coming in 2009 and 2018 when she reached the third round on both occasions. Kanepi has managed to reach the quarter-finals of all the other Grand Slam events twice in her career.
The year's first Grand Slam event starts in Melbourne on January 20th and ends on February 2nd. Japan's Naomi Osaka is the defending champion on the women's side while Serbia's Novak Djokovic is the defending champion on the men's side.
Monica Puig has withdrawn from the #AusOpen with an elbow injury. @KanepiKaia now moves into the main draw.
Wishing you a speedy recovery @MonicaAce93. Hope to see you back in Australia soon 🇦🇺🦘 pic.twitter.com/fb8jGebO05 — #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) December 19, 2019