Czech teenager Linda Noskova advanced into the first Grand Slam quarterfinal of her career when an injured No.19 seed Elina Svitolina retired from their Round of 16 match after only three games.

Svitolina took a medical timeout after falling behind 2-0 in the opening set, where the trainer attended to her back. Svitolina lost the next game to cede a 3-0 lead to Noskova before ending the match.

"I got a spasm, or I don't know exactly what it is, but like shooting pain in the first game, the last two points," Svitolina told reporters afterward. "Yeah, couldn't do anything. Completely locked my back. Just very sad, of course."

The 19-year-old Noskova, who stunned World No.1 Iga Swiatek in the previous round, will face Ukrainian qualifier Dayana Yastremska.

"I think she's playing really great," Noskova said. "She came through quallies and had some great matches here. We've never played each other. I don't really know the way she plays, but I think she's more of, like, an aggressive tennis player.

"So I guess we won't have a lot of rallies, but I think that I will just have to be prepared for anything, because I don't really know her style. We'll see what happens."

Prior to her retirement, the 29-year-old Svitolina was enjoying an outstanding start to her 2024 season. Ranked No.23, she opened her year by defeating Caroline Wozniacki and Emma Raducanu en route to the final in Auckland, where she took No.4 Coco Gauff to three sets. 

Svitolina was bidding to join her countrywomen Marta Kostyuk and Yastremska in the Australian Open quarterfinals.

"Of course, now I feel very old because of my health, but I'm happy that they are doing great," Svitolina said. "It's great for Ukrainian tennis. It's great for the upcoming generation as well, especially now these days when Ukraine is in such a tough time."

In Melbourne, Svitolina had lost just 13 games across her three matches to return to the Round of 16. She was bidding to make her third major quarterfinal in her last four appearances, having made the quarterfinals at Roland Garros and semifinals of Wimbledon last year. 

"I think I never had that before, the shooting pain like this," Svtolina said. "I had some injuries to my back before where it just was tiredness the next day of the match, but this one was really out of nowhere. I felt like someone shot me in the back."

Making her Australian Open main-draw debut this year, No.50 Noskova is the second teenager to book a spot in the quarterfinals this year, joining Gauff. Prior to this year, she had yet to win back-to-back main-draw matches at a Slam. 

"I was physically and mentally prepared for a match, so obviously a little sad it had to end this way," Noskova said, "but I hope Elina gets well really soon."