World number two Ons Jabeur has crashed out of the Australian Open, losing to former French Open finalist Marketa Vondrousova in the second round.
The Tunisian was beaten 6-1, 5-7, 6-1 on Thursday, shattering once again her dream to reach the top of the women’s singles ranking.
“Despite the health issues, I will keep fighting and come back stronger and stronger. Time to recover and get healthier,” Jabeur said on her Twitter account on Friday.
Elsewhere, injury-hampered Novak Djokovic moved into the third round as the path to a 22nd Grand Slam title opened up for him with the premature exit of second seed Casper Ruud.
Ruud’s second-round exit came a day after Djokovic’s great rival Rafa Nadal, the top seed, was knocked out.
Nine-time Melbourne Park champion Djokovic was delayed slightly by an inspired second set from French qualifier Enzo Couacaud in his 6-1, 6-7, 6-2, 6-0 victory but was troubled by his heavily-strapped left thigh.
Andy Murray, whom Djokovic has beaten in four Australian Open finals, remains in the hunt after coming through a late-night epic against Australia’s Thanasi Kokkinakis, winning 4-6, 6-7, 7-6, 6-3, 7-5 victory after five hours and 45 minutes – the second-longest match in the tournament’s history.