Victoria Azarenka joins list of Olympics tennis exits

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Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka reacts throughout her ladies’s singles fourth spherical tennis match in opposition to Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova on Day 8 of The Roland Garros 2021 French Open in Paris on June 6, 2021. (Photograph by Christophe ARCHAMBAULT / AFP)

Former world primary and 2012 Olympic gold medalist Victoria Azarenka on Thursday grew to become the newest Grand Slam winner to withdraw from the Tokyo Video games, citing “challenges from the pandemic.”

Azarenka, who received combined doubles gold alongside Max Mirnyi in 2012, in addition to a bronze in singles, joins Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Dominic Thiem and Angelique Kerber in pulling out.

“I want to inform everybody that I’ve made the very troublesome choice to not play within the Tokyo Olympics,” the 31-year-old Belarusian wrote on Twitter.

“I’ve many wonderful recollections successful the gold whereas competing and representing Belarus in earlier Video games.

“However with all of the challenges we face because it pertains to the pandemic, I do know in my coronary heart that is the proper choice for myself and the staff.

“I sit up for returning to the 2024 Olympics in Paris to characterize Belarus.”

Azarenka didn’t specify if a ban on relations getting into Japan, which might have included her four-year-old son Leo, was a first-rate think about her choice.

The Olympics, already delayed by a 12 months, get underway on July 23.

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