Misc Tennis

Paris Olympics: Ons Jabeur & Aryna Sabalenka will not play at 2024 Games

Ons Jabeur and Aryna Sabalenka looking disappointed

Ons Jabeur and Aryna Sabalenka say they will not compete at this summer’s Olympic Games in Paris in order to prioritise their health.

World number three Sabalenka retained her Australian Open title in January but lost to Russian teenager Mirra Andreeva in the French Open quarter-finals this month.

That was the first time the Belarusian, 26, had lost before the semi-finals of a major since the 2022 French Open.

Jabeur, the world number 10, has been struggling with a recurring knee injury over the past two years and the 29-year-old Tunisian is concerned about playing on grass and hard courts either side of the Olympics.

The tennis competition at the Games takes place on the clay courts at Roland Garros from 27 July to 4 August, with the US Open beginning 22 days later.

Jabeur, who was also beaten in the French Open quarter-finals, said on X, external she and her team had “decided that the quick change of surface and the body’s adaptation required would put my knee at risk and jeopardise the rest of my season”.

Sabalenka, who was runner-up at last year’s US Open, said: “I prefer to have a little rest to make sure physically and health-wise I’m ready for the hard courts.

“Especially with all the struggles I’ve been struggling with the last months, I feel I have to take care of my health.

“It’s too much for the scheduling and I made the decision to take care of my health.”

Athletes from Russia and Belarus who qualify for the Games can only compete as neutrals in Paris, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Russian men’s world number four Daniil Medvedev is among the players who intend to compete at the Olympics as a neutral athlete.

Sabalenka is set to play in Berlin as part of her Wimbledon preparations, having reached the semi-finals last year.

Wimbledon takes place from 1-14 July.

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at BBC Sport…