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Victoria Azarenka withdraws from Tokyo Olympics

Sep 27, 2020; Paris, France; Victoria Azarenka (BLR) reacts during her match against Danka Kovinic (MNE) on day one of the 2020 French Open at Stade Roland Garros. Mandatory Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 27, 2020; Paris, France; Victoria Azarenka (BLR) reacts during her match against Danka Kovinic (MNE) on day one of the 2020 French Open at Stade Roland Garros. Mandatory Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports

Two-time medalist Victoria Azarenka on Thursday became the latest tennis star to withdraw from the Tokyo Olympics.

The 31-year-old from Belarus won a bronze medal in singles and a gold in mixed doubles at the 2012 Summer Games in London.

Azarenka announced her decision on Instagram, citing “challenges” with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I have many amazing memories winning the gold while competing and representing Belarus in previous Games, but with all the challenges we are facing as it relates to the pandemic, I know in my heart this is the right decision for myself and team,” she wrote.

“I look forward to returning to the 2024 Olympics in Paris to represent Belarus! I wish all my fellow athletes a safe, healthy, and successful Games.”

The former World No. 1 has captured 21 WTA singles titles, including back-to-back Australian Open championships in 2012 and 2013.

Other stars who are skipping the Summer Games in Japan include Serena Williams, Bianca Andreescu, Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem.

–Field Level Media