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Victoria Azarenka’s gesture to injured opponent wins hearts

After an emotional scene in which she was comforted by Azarenka on the court, the Russian was unable to continue and retired from the match after one hour and 16 minutes of an intense battle.

By: Sports Desk | Updated: September 19, 2020 12:23:21 pm
azarenka kasatkinaVictoria Azarenka consoles Daria Kasatkina after her injury-forced retirement in their match (Screenshot)

Victoria Azarenka, the former World Number 1 women’s tennis player, went through to the Italian Open quarterfinals when her opponent Daria Kasatkina retired due to a right ankle injury on Friday.

The Belarusian 31-year-old won hearts with her reaction to Kasatkina’s injury, as it became clear the 23-year-old Russian would not be able to continue, with the match then in the first set tie-break.

As the Russian chased a ball that clipped off the net on the second point of the tiebreak, with Azarenka leading 1-0, she rolled over on her right foot as she slid in an attempt to reach the ball.

Azarenka fetched her a bag of ice, comforted her when she burst into tears and then helped her to her chair.

After an emotional scene in which she was comforted by Azarenka on the court, the Russian was unable to continue and retired from the match after one hour and 16 minutes of play.

“I hope she’s able to recover before the French Open. I offered her my help and my team’s help if she needs it,” Azarenka said after the match.

Azarenka advances to a quarterfinal meeting Garbiñe Muguruza.

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