Article

Halep withdraws from Doha with foot injury, Wozniacki stays No.1

16 February 2018 20:38

Simona Halep has given up the opportunity to reclaim the world number one spot after pulling out of the Qatar Open with a foot injury, meaning Caroline Wozniacki cannot be caught atop the rankings this week.

Halep ended CiCi Bellis' fine run at the Qatar Open on Friday, reaching the semi-finals with a 6-0 6-4 win and did not appear hampered by injury during the victory.

But after the match, the Romanian - who had the chance to overhaul Wozniacki in Doha - confirmed she will not continue in the event, the 26-year-old also pulling out of next week's Dubai Tennis Championships.

"I am surprised that I could play three matches and to win them," Halep told reporters. "I felt pain every day, so it was not easy to manage it. I didn't have much time to recover before this tournament, but today was too much - and I decided to stop.

"Definitely until Indian Wells I will not play anything. I will decide before the tournament if I will be able to play. For the moment I cannot say much. I have to take day by day and to see if I can recover until Indian Wells."

Later in the day, Wozniacki came through a tight three-set clash with Angelique Kerber to move into the semi-finals and the Dane's win ensures she is guaranteed to be the world number one at the end of the tournament.

Of Halep's withdrawal, Wozniacki said: "Obviously I feel really bad for her, it looked like she was moving well. She is a great player, a great champion, and hopefully she will be back soon."

Garbine Muguruza, who beat Caroline Garcia in the last-eight, earns a bye into Sunday's Doha final due to Halep's withdrawal.

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