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Sabalenka and Jabeur retire at Berlin Open

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Aryna Sabalenka and Ons Jabeur

Sabalenka (left) and Jabeur are among the contenders for the women’s singles title at Wimbledon (Getty Images)

Aryna Sabalenka and Ons Jabeur became the latest Wimbledon contenders to withdraw early from matches leading up to the Grand Slam tournament.

World number three Sabalenka appeared to struggle with a shoulder injury and retired while trailing 5-1 in her Berlin Open quarter-final against Anna Kalinskaya.

Jabeur, a two-time Wimbledon finalist, decided not to continue due to illness after losing the first set 7-6 (11-9) to Coco Gauff.

Reigning Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrousova and 2022 winner Elena Rybakina also withdrew from their matches early in the tournament.

The first round of Wimbledon women’s singles begins on July 1.

Jabeur saved eight set points against Gauff before the American top seed clinched the opener.

The Tunisian, who appeared to be having trouble breathing, was treated by the doctor before deciding not to start the second set.

“It doesn’t feel like a win. We had such a good first set,” Gauff said in her later on-court interview.

“I wish Ons the best, I think it’s something that’s going to happen today and she’ll be better tomorrow, so I hope she’s at Wimbledon.”

Earlier in the week, Czech Vondrousova slipped and injured her right hip against Kalinskaya in the second round, while Rybakina withdrew from her last-16 tie against Victoria Azarenka due to illness.

Gauff will play compatriot and doubles partner Jessica Pegula in the semifinals later Saturday.

Fourth-seeded Pegula returned to complete a 7-6 (7-2), 3-6, 6-3 victory against Katerina Siniakova after rain delayed her match on Friday.

Meanwhile, Kalinskaya, who now has a 7-0 winning record against top 10 players this season, will face former world number one Azarenka.

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