January 1, 2020 / 3:41 AM / 7 months ago

Venus pulls out of Brisbane International, cites 'setback' in training

FILE PHOTO: Aug 26, 2019; Flushing, NY, USA; Venus Williams of the United States hits a forehand against Saisai Zheng of China (not pictured) in the first round on day one of the 2019 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - Venus Williams has pulled out of the upcoming Brisbane International after suffering a ‘setback’ in training, the former world number one said on Wednesday.

Williams, 39, was set to join world number one Ash Barty, Karolina Pliskova and Naomi Osaka in a strong field at the Queensland Tennis Centre from Jan. 6-12 and the organizers said they would announce a wildcard to take her place in the draw.

“Unfortunately, I won’t be starting my season in Brisbane due to an unexpected setback during my training,” Venus, a seven-times Grand Slam winner who was handed a wildcard for the event, said in a statement.

“I look forward to being in Australia in the New Year and will see everyone at Adelaide.”

The Adelaide International begins on Jan. 13.

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Kim Coghill

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