Monica Puig, the 2016 Olympic gold medalist, has shut down her season after undergoing a second shoulder surgery. Puig announced the news on social media.
"About a week ago I underwent a second shoulder surgery to repair my rotator cuff and my biceps tendon," Puig said. "This puts me in a very difficult position and having to sit out the Tokyo Olympics this year. It is very difficult and with a heavy heart that I took this decision."
Puig became a national hero at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, mounting a fairytale breakout run to become the first athlete representing Puerto Rico to win Olympic gold. Ranked No.34 at the time, Puig plowed through a draw that included wins over Polona Hercog, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Garbiñe Muguruza and Laura Siegemund to advance to the medal rounds. There, Puig ousted Petra Kvitova and Angelique Kerber in back-to-back three-set thrillers to make Olympic history.
Puig underwent elbow surgery in December 2019 and has played just three matches since, as she has struggled to get back on court pain-free.
"Obviously, my team and I are thinking long term and prolonging my career for as many years as possible and hoping to play in the Paris 2024 Olympics. That was one of the reasons that led to this decision. The second reason was obviously nobody wants to play with pain. The pain was just too unbearable to spend more than 10 minutes on the court and that is something I struggled with as I started my return to the tennis courts."
"Sometimes we have to make these really painful choices and sacrifices in our life, but I can report that I am in very good spirits and although I will be missing the rest of this season I'm already looking forward to returning to the courts in 2022."