Jelena Dokic is most unlikely to play in this month’s Australian Open, after withdrawing from the adidas International in Sydney.
The former Wimbledon semi-finalist had already scratched from this week’s Auckland tournament – citing “personal reasons” – but was expected to play in the traditional grand slam warm-up event which starts in Sydney this weekend.
Instead, she has announced her withdrawal because of a lack of fitness.
“I’m really disappointed that I won’t be able to compete in the adidas International – but I really need to spend a little more time training in order to play my best tennis,” said Dokic.
“It’s important to me to start the year strongly, and I think the fans in Australia deserve nothing less than every player’s absolute best tennis.”
The 20-year-old remains in the Australian Open draw – but having not played a tournament in the build-up, her participation is doubtful.
Dokic’s controversial father Damir was reported today as saying his daughter does not want to return Down Under because she still believes the 2001 Australian Open draw was fixed.
Three years ago, Dokic was pitched against Lindsay Davenport in the first round and has not played in Australia since – with her family moving from Sydney to Belgrade.
“When we left Australia we had plenty of problems, and she doesn’t want to play the Australian Open,” Damir told the Sydney Morning Herald.
“We still think the match to play against Lindsay Davenport was rigged.
“Some people in Tennis Australia and [management company] Octagon did not want to see her do well and become a big star. How could she go back?
“She called us and said she would not be going to Australia.”