Mauresmo latest to pull out of Chase Championships

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The Independent Online

Amelie Mauresmo of France became the fifth player to withdraw from the season-ending Chase Championships, which begins on Monday in New York's Madison Square Garden.

Amelie Mauresmo of France became the fifth player to withdraw from the season-ending Chase Championships, which begins on Monday in New York's Madison Square Garden.

In withdrawing on Friday from the 16-player tournament, where even the first-round loser gets $30,000, Mauresmo cited an ongoing leg injury. Earlier, sisters Venus and Serena Williams, Mary Pierce of France and Anke Huber of Germany pulled out with injuries.

"It's crazy. I have never seen so many players pulling out of a tournament," said Lindsay Davenport, the defending champion. "It's disappointing because it is the last year of the tournament. I think we're all going to miss playing there a lot. Who knows what is going to happen next."

This is the last year the event will be held in New York. The tournament is being moved to Munich, Germany.

Elena Likhovtseva of Russia moves into the field, replacing Mauresmo, while Patty Schnyder of Switzerland is the first alternate.

"I was looking forward to returning to New York," Mauresmo said. "Because of my injury I have not been able to practice and cannot play, so on my doctor's advice I am going to continue to rest so I am ready for next season."

After a first-round loss at Wimbledon to Spain's Gala Leon Garcia, Mauresmo pulled out of a number of tournaments, including the U.S. Open due to a chronic low back injury. Her first match back was in the Sydney Olympics, where she lost in the first round to Colombia's Fabiola Zuluaga.

She played three more tournaments before withdrawing from this week's Advanta Championships in Philadelphia because of an injury to her left thigh, according to the WTA Tour.

This would have been Mauresmo's second straight Championships. Last year she lost in the first round to Davenport.

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