Reigning Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina has withdrawn from the San Diego Open due to illness. Rybakina, 23, was scheduled to make her San Diego debut this year. Unfortunately, she was forced to withdraw from her San Diego first-round match versus Garbine Muguruza.
Following Rybakina's withdrawal, Qinwen Zheng made the San Diego draw as a lucky loser.
Last week, Rybakina competed in Ostrava. Rybakina, who made the Ostrava semifinal, seemingly caught a cold while in the Czech Republic.
Elena Rybakina has withdrawn from San Diego due to illness and will be replaced by Lucky Loser Zheng Qinwen, who will face Garbiñe Muguruza this afternoon.
— WTA Insider (@WTA_insider) October 11, 2022
Rybakina enjoyed a deep Ostrava run
In Ostrava, Rybakina made the semifinal before falling short to home favorite Barbora Krejcikova.
Rybakina made a positive start versus Krejcikova, but the Czech tennis star stormed back to win in three sets 3-6 7-6 (4) 6-4. After the match, Krejcikova praised Rybakina's level as she insisted that the Kazakh played "an incredible tennis." "It was a really difficult match, I think we both played incredible tennis.
I'm very happy with the way things turned around for me, because I thought that I got very [few] chances. I was really happy that I was able to convert them and that I was able to get the win," Krejcikova said after beating Rybakina in Ostrava.
After winning Wimbledon, Rybakina didn't really enjoy much success during the North American hard court. But Rybakina rediscovered her game upon returning to Europe, having made the Portoroz final mid-September. After a strong Portoroz run, Rybakina suffered a first-round defeat to Liudmila Samsonova in Tokyo.
However, Rybakina bounced back from an early Tokyo exit, making the Ostrava semifinal last week. Since Wimbledon, Rybakina has made some notable results but there have also been some early exits. Still, it has been a great season for her as it doesn't get better than becoming a Grand Slam champion at Wimbledon. Hopefully, Rybakina recovers quickly from illness and soon returns to action.