Two-time Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from this year's Australian Open. Venus Williams has also withdrawn after sustaining an injury at the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand.
A champion in Melbourne in 2019 and 2021, Osaka has not played a competitive match since the US Open last fall. Last year, the former No.1 advanced to the third round, where she bowed out to Amanda Anisimova 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(5).
With Osaka's withdrawal, Ukraine's Dayana Yastremska moves into the main draw.
Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from the Australian Open. We will miss her at #AO2023 💙— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 8, 2023
Williams, 42, won her opening match in Auckland this week before losing to Zhu Lin in three sets.
Now in her 30th season on the Hologic WTA Tour, Williams had accepted a wild card into the Australian Open. She is a two-time runner-up in Melbourne, with her latest run to the final coming in 2017. Venus lost to sister Serena Williams in both those finals.
Venus Williams, a seven-time Grand Slam winner, said last month on her YouTube channel that she was “playing a lot of tennis” since the US Open and would like to continue competing in 2023. Last year, she played four singles matches.
The Australian Open begins Jan. 16 in Melbourne.