Injuries force out Ivanisevic and Seles

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Goran Ivanisevic and Monica Seles have been forced to pull out of Wimbledon. Ivanisevic, the 2001 men's singles winner sustained a knee injury while practising with his Croatian team-mate, Mario Ancic, last week. He has struggled with a series of injuries since winning Wimbledon - a shoulder problem prevented him from defending his title last year - but looked to have proved his fitness by competing in the Stella Artois Championships at Queen's Club.

He was beaten in the first round by Jan Vacek, but had hoped to continue his Wimbledon build-up in the Samsung Open at Nottingham.

Seles has withdrawn because of continuing problems with a foot injury. The former world No 1, who was Wimbledon runner-up to Steffi Graf in 1992, struggled at the French Open, where she lost in straight sets to Russia's Nadia Petrova in the first round.

Argentina's Mariana Diaz-Olivia and Anne Kremer, of Luxembourg, have also withdrawn from Wimbledon and the former men's world No 1 Marcelo Rios, who dislikes grass tournaments, is also out.

The remaining men's singles wildcard has been taken by the British No 4, Martin Lee, who will also compete in the men's doubles alongside Miles Maclagen.

Roger Federer, the world No 5, warmed up in ideal fashion at the Halle Open in Germany yesterday when he beat Nicolas Kiefer 6-1, 6-3 in the final to win his first grasscourt title, joining a select band of active players to have won on all four surfaces - grass, clay, hardcourt and indoors.

Federer, who lost to Ankic in the opening round at Wimbledon last year, said: "I play my best tennis when I'm playing aggressive.

"Last year, I didn't feel great here and then I didn't feel great at Wimbledon, but two years ago, I felt good here and then beat Sampras at Wimbledon. I hope I feel as good this year."

Australia's Todd Woodbridge took another step towards becoming the most successful doubles player of all time when he won his 75th title at the Halle Open. Woodbridge and Jonas Bjorkman, of Sweden, beat the Czech pair Cyrill Suk and Martin Damm 6-3, 6-4 to lift the Australian above Frew McMillan into third on the all-time list, two behind American John McEnroe, and three behind Dutchman Tom Okker.